In the same way that Salesforce commoditised CRM I often wonder what if they did the same to core banking. If they built a set of banking services that ran on the exact same platform as their CRM solution and could use the ecosystem that has built up around it. What would a bank pretty much entirely powered by and run on the Salesforce platform look like?
In June last year Salesforce and Oracle announced a strategic partnership which caught my eye. It was a mixture of we will use your stuff and you can use ours. Oracle do have a core banking solution and I wondered how tightly that could be integrated into Salesforce. Alternatively what if Salesforce built one from the ground up?
Salesforce already have payroll, payments and accounting capabilities. They already integrate into financial services and systems in a number of areas but could they go further? They would of course need banking and money transmission licenses for the markets they wanted to operate in. We would also need to see moves by the regulator to approve Salesforce infrastructure. In the Netherlands last year we saw Amazon Web Services gain approval for usage in financial services so no reason why Salesforce could not have approved bank grade data centres and services.
The term bank in a box get bandied about in all kinds of places (well the dull ones I oft inhabit) Salesforce could be the first company to really achieve that and all in the cloud. Not bank in a box, which harks back to the days of software installs but bank in the cloud, which looks to the misty ill-defined future.
I am sure Mr Benioff is all over this, if not my consultancy and reckon services are available for a very competitve license fee.
UPDATE 17/03/2015. Looks like they are making a few moves in this direction. Invested in nCino a newish bank software platform built on you know what.