Arik Hesseldahl

Recent Posts by Arik Hesseldahl

Box.net CEO Aaron Levie Takes His Show to New York

Fresh off of landing an impressive $81 million expansion round of venture capital funding from the likes of Salesforce.com and SAP Ventures, Aaron Levie, the precocious 26-year-old CEO of Box.net, hit New York yesterday and stopped by for a visit.

Levie was in town to meet with Box.net customers and to talk a little about the Box Innovation Network, which will encourage companies to build applications around Box.net, the file sharing and collaboration cloud service that has won business from 100,000 companies, including 77 percent of the Fortune 500.

Too often, Levie says, companies build their applications for collaborating and sharing content around Microsoft SharePoint, or roll their own custom apps. “So what we’re trying to do is offer people a better environment to build those applications; much better than Sharepoint, and far better than anything on the market,” he says. “We’re going to run everything from the storage to the content management to the security — all of the nuts and bolts pieces that make building applications really annoying and not strategic, so you can go focus on the strategic part.”

Box already has some pretty good partnerships. As NetSuite CEO Zach Nelson noted yesterday, Box is one of that company’s partners, as is Google Apps, the cloud-based office application suite that is turning more companies away from Microsoft Office. And Salesforce.com is not only an investor but has been a Box partner since 2009.

More details about the Box Innovation Network will be forthcoming soon — including the names of the development partners Box is working with — so stay tuned. Levie talked about that, and about his longer-term plans for Box, on The Wall Street Journal’s “Digits” show yesterday:


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There’s a lot of attention and PR around Marissa, but their product lineup just kind of blows.

— Om Malik on Bloomberg TV, talking about Yahoo, the September issue of Vogue Magazine, and our overdependence on Google