Salesforce just bought a machine learning startup that was backed by its CEO Marc Benioff


Marc Benioff

REUTERS/Mike Blake

Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff

Salesforce just bought another startup in the machine learning space, an area the cloud software maker has been doubling down on recently.


The startup is called MetaMind, a startup that specializes in artificial intelligence using natural language and image recognition technology. It's raised $8 million so far from Khosla Ventures and Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff.

The announcement was made through a blog post on MetaMind's website. The financial details of the deal were not disclosed. Salesforce's rep confirmed the deal but declined to comment further.

Salesforce has been on a buying spree in the machine learning and data analysis space lately, scooping up startups like PredictionIO, MinHash, and Tempo AI. Just two years ago, it spent $390 million to buy RelateIQ, a software that helps automate data-input and gives sales recommendations.

The moves are part of Salesforce's effort to make smarter and more predictive software, as Benioff believes that's where the future of software is headed. At a recent conference, Benioff stressed that systems capable of analyzing data and recommending the right course of action will be where the next wave of opportunity comes from.


"This will be the huge shift going forward, which is that everybody wants systems that are smarter, everybody wants systems that are more predictive, everybody wants everything scored, everybody wants to understand what's the next best offer, next best opportunity, how to make things a little bit more efficient," Benioff said.

Salesforce recently launched IoT Cloud, a software platform that collects and analyzes data to help companies make better decisions. Two years ago, it launched Wave, a data analytics platform.

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