AWS appoints Salesforce exec Adam Selipsky as CEO

The former Tableau CEO is returning to AWS after four years to replace Andy Jassy

Adam Selipsky on stage with Salesforce CEO Mark Benioff

Amazon Web Services (AWS) has appointed Salesforce executive Adam Selipsky as its new CEO. 

Selipsky will replace Andy Jassy, who himself is replacing Jeff Bezos as the CEO of AWS' parent company Amazon. 

The appointment will see Selipsky return to AWS after leaving in 2016 to become the CEO of Tableau. He previously spent 11 years at the AWS as vice president of sales, marketing and support, but his return as CEO has still come as a surprise to some in the industry who expected the role to go to a current AWS executive. 

"Whilst on first glance, hiring Selipsky to replace Jassy is a surprising call given that many expected this to be an inside job," said. Nick McQuire, chief of research and enterprise at CSS Insight.

"In reality, few AWS execs have the raw CEO experience of running a hyper-growth technology business," he added. "Selipsky fits this bill of course but the fact that he has extensive experience of the AWS 'secret sauce' culture as well, makes him an obvious bet."

Selipsky's tenure at Tableau saw the company's value quadruple as he lead its move from perpetual licenses to subscriptions. In 2019 the firm was acquired by Salesforce, where Selipsky became a member of its executive leadership board while continuing as Tableau's CEO.  

"Adam brings strong judgment, customer obsession, team building, demand generation, and CEO experience to an already very strong AWS leadership team," Jassy wrote in a statement. "And, having been in such a senior role at AWS for 11 years, he knows our culture and business well.

"With a $51 billion revenue run rate that's growing 28% YoY, it's easy to forget that AWS is still in the very early stages of what's possible. Less than 5% of the global IT spend is in the cloud at this point. That's going to substantially change in the coming years. We have a lot more to invent for customers, and we have a very strong leadership team and group of builders to go make it happen. Am excited for what lies ahead."

Selipsky is set to start his new role as AWS CEO on 17 May. 

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