INDIANAPOLIS, Ind.- The centerpiece of the Indianapolis skyline is officially the Salesforce Tower.
The former Chase Tower was christened with its new name Saturday afternoon during a celebration on Monument Circle. However, just a few years ago, many thought something like this would never happen.
In 2013, Salesforce rolled into Indianapolis when it bought tech company Exact Target, quickly setting its sights on expansion. But then in 2015 came Indiana’s controversial RFRA law.
Salesforce CEO Marc Benioff was among the first and most vocal opponents of the law, even threatening to pull his employees out of Indiana altogether if it wasn’t fixed.
But during Saturday’s sunny afternoon on Monument Circle, 2015 and the RFRA debacle seemed a long ways away.
“We want equality for all of our employees, we want everyone the ability to come here and work and prosper and enjoy and we felt that was going to prevent that,” said Benioff on Saturday, “we made our case to our Governor [at the time Mike Pence], he reversed the decision and today we have an Indiana filled with equality and we couldn’t be happier.”
He then laid out the company’s plan for its own growth in Indianapolis.
“Over five years we’re creating 800 more jobs in Indy,” said Benioff, “we’re creating another $40 million here and we hope our expanded presence is going to have a ripple effect.”
Salesforce is now the state’s largest tech employer.
“Think about it for just a second,” said Indiana Governor Eric Holcomb (R), “more than 114,000 Hoosiers earn their living in Indiana’s tech sector now, and some of you are with us today.”
Officials say Salesforce’s commitment to Indiana bodes well for the state’s economic future.
“Their commitment to this city, it should go without saying, will attract other businesses to locate here,” said Indianapolis Mayor Joe Hogsett (D).