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Salesforce earmarks $200m for black businesses, racial equality

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US-based cloud software company Salesforce has committed $200 million towards black-owned businesses as well as minority-owned companies.

This week, the San Francisco-headquartered firm released its annual Stakeholder Impact Report, which showcases Salesforce’s commitment to environmental, social and governance transparency to keep the company’s stakeholders informed and track progress over time.

It also established a taskforce that aims to drive systemic change at Salesforce and society across four areas – people, purchasing, philanthropy and policy.

Says Marc Benioff, CEO of Salesforce: “As we respond to the pandemic, we continue to live our core values, including our commitment to equality. As systemic racism and violence against the black community rose to the forefront in the past year, we established a new Racial Equality and Justice Taskforce to drive systemic change at Salesforce and society.”

Benioff says over the next five years, the company will invest $200 million and one million volunteer hours with organisations working to advance racial equality and justice at the global, national and local level.

“We are also committing to spend $100 million on black-owned businesses and $100 million on minority-owned companies by fiscal 2024. We continue to advocate for police reform, civic engagement and economic empowerment policies.”

According to Benioff, last year, Salesforce added two new leadership and overall representation goals, committing to double the US representation of black employees in leadership (vice-president and above) and increase US representation of black employees by 50% by the end of fiscal 2024.

“We’re also working towards our goal of ensuring underrepresented groups make up half of our US workforce by fiscal 2024. To date, we’ve invested more than $16 million to ensure equal pay across gender and race, and we conduct annual assessments to address unexplained pay gaps.

“We realise that every institution and company, including Salesforce, has so much more to do to ensure equality in our workplaces and across the globe.”


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