Okta Names Salesforce Exec as New Chief Customer Officer
Okta, the startup that aims to help companies manage their many login credentials for all the cloud services they use, has hired its first chief customer officer.
Krista Anderson, previously a senior vice president at Salesforce.com, started at Okta on Monday, the company’s CEO Todd McKinnon told Re/code. The hire is notable in part because McKinnon was himself a senior VP for development at Salesforce.com.
Anderson’s most recent title was SVP of “customer for life,” a title that morphed over the years from SVP for Global Support and then to “customer success.” She was in part responsible for building a well-regarded customer support operation over the course of about 13 years. (And like me, she’s a graduate of the University of Oregon.) McKinnon said in that job she hit customer-retention targets year after year.
It turns out to be just the moment that Okta needs someone in the role. McKinnon told me in an interview Wednesday that Okta has doubled its customer base over the course of the last six months and now has more than 1,000 companies using the service. Among the new names are Chiquita Brands; Noble Corporation, an oil and gas contractor; and retailer Tommy Bahama. Other customers include LinkedIn, MGM Resorts, Western Union and software giant SAP.
Okta also expanded into Europe around the same time it raised a new round of funding.
McKinnon founded Okta in 2009, and it has since raised about $80 million in venture capital funding from firms including Andreessen Horowitz, Sequoia Capital, Khosla Ventures and Greylock Partners.
Its specialty is helping companies manage the sign-on credentials of all their employees as they adopt cloud computing services like Salesforce.com, Workday and Marketo. But it also works with on-premise products. The idea is to create a single identity for every kind of software that a business might use, and thus make it easy to manage access, enabling it when a new employee joins, adding access to different things when their job changes, and cutting their access in one easy go when they leave.