Salesforce.com Seals Merrill Lynch Mega-Deal
At the end of February 2007, Salesforce.com announced a mega-deal with the wealth management division of Merrill Lynch. Merrill is expanding its use of Salesforce.com's on-demand Customer Relationship Management ("CRM") service to some 25,000 seats. This agreement makes Merrill Lynch Salesforce.com's largest customer ahead of previous leaders Cisco and Dell with approximately 15,000 licenses each. This announcement coincides with the introduction of Salesforce's first solution offering for the financial services vertical called Salesforce Wealth Management Edition.
Toomre Capital Markets LLC takes note of this win, particularly with regards to privacy and the protection of sensitive customer data. One of the drawback's to the hosted CRM model like that offered by Salesforce.com over on-premise solutions like that offered by rival Seibel is that sensitive customer data is hosted outside the control of the organization. TCM wonders what bells and whistles Merrill wrapped around this product to ensure that customer data remains private and that the various brokers remain in compliance with the many rules and regulations that apply to customer privacy. Thoughts and comments are welcome.