The provider of cloud-based ecommerce, CRM and other business software said its Marketing and Commerce Cloud software revenue grew 21% for the fiscal second quarter ended July 31.

Subscription and support services revenue from the company’s Marketing and Commerce Cloud software—which includes its B2B and retail ecommerce software—increased by 1.1% year over year in the fiscal second quarter ended July 31 to $746 million, and by 24.0% to $1.36 billion in the fiscal first half, Salesforce.com reported yesterday.

Companies realized they couldn’t put off major technology upgrades.
Gavin Patterson, chief revenue officer
Salesforce.com Inc.

Executives said sales of Commerce Cloud are benefitting from the “broad digitization” of commerce in both B2B and business-to-consumer channels, which is driving substantial increases in the gross merchandise value of products and services companies are selling online.

“We saw over 100% year-over-year GMV growth this past quarter, and I think it really reflects the broad digitization of commerce,” Bret Taylor, president and chief operating officer, said on a conference call with investment analysts, according to a transcript from Seeking Alpha. “And, I think when I looked at our Commerce Cloud and our differentiated value proposition, it’s two things. One is we do both B2C Commerce and B2B Commerce. And I think that when I talk to customers, it’s really about all of their channels.”

He added, “Commerce Cloud is really a part of a broad solution that we’re providing to customers to really digitize their commerce experience, all the way from making that order on through the end of that customer experience, whether you’re picking it up on the curb or it’s being delivered to your doorstep, and those transformations have never been more important in this all-digital, work-from-anywhere world.”

Total Q2 revenue climbed 29% to $5.15 billion. On average, analysts projected $4.9 billion. Profit before certain items was $1.44 a share; excluding an additional 58-cent gain from investments, that number would have been 86 cents a share. Analysts had predicted 67 cents. Shares jumped more than 13% in late trading.

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Sales will be as much as $5.25 billion in the third quarter, the San Francisco-based company said Tuesday in a statement. Analysts, on average, estimated $5 billion, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The software maker also boosted its revenue predictions for the full fiscal year to as much as $20.8 billion.

Salesforce will soon be a component of the Dow Jones Industrial Average, highlighting its rise from upstart to cloud-software bellwether over the past 21 years. Chief Executive Officer Marc Benioff has kept the momentum going, in part through acquisitions that have given the company a broader portfolio of software.

Tuesday’s results marked a rebound from May, when Salesforce trimmed its annual forecast because some corporate customers paused new spending. Benioff said that to thrive during the Covid-19 outbreak, the company has had to get closer to customers and “reimagine its relevance.” To do so, it conceived the work.com and Salesforce Anywhere products, meant to help clients safely reopen offices and work remotely, respectively. Work.com is also being used by governments and schools to do coronavirus contact tracing and manage employee shifts.

“Companies realized they couldn’t put off” major technology upgrades, Chief Revenue Officer Gavin Patterson said Tuesday on a conference call. “They had to make decisions that would take weeks or months, in days.” Benioff recently promoted Patterson, former CEO of British telecom company BT Group Plc, to help Salesforce pen major deals with international customers.

Salesforce executives pointed to customers such as Sonos Inc., a maker of speakers, which used Salesforce applications to bolster its direct-to-consumer e-commerce revenue during the pandemic. Under Armour Inc. adopted Salesforce’s latest Commerce Cloud technology as well, Benioff said.

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Salesforce shares soared as high as $247.80 in extended trading after closing at $216.05 in New York. The stock has climbed 33% this year.

Revenue from Sales Cloud, the company’s flagship product, increased 13% to $1.28 billion in the second quarter. The company leads the market for sales-tracking software, but growth rates have slowed over time.

Service Cloud sales climbed 20% to $1.3 billion in the recent period. The software maker offers this tool so companies can communicate with field employees and customers.

Revenue in Salesforce’s “Platform and Other” business category, which includes several of its recent acquisitions, gained 66% to $1.5 billion during the second quarter. Tableau, a data-analytics software maker Salesforce purchased in August 2019, contributed 41 percentage points of that 66% growth figure, Chief Financial Officer Mark Hawkins said on the call.

Benioff said he thinks Tableau will one day be looked at as the best acquisition in the history of software.

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“This moment is both humbling and bittersweet,” Benioff said. “This has been such a challenging time for us, for our families, and to see these amazing results, it’s just incredible.”

The editorial staff of Digital Commerce 360 B2B contributed to this report.

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