Last November, Dropbox’s leaders were preparing for Dropbox Open, a star-studded event in San Francisco where the company would rebrand its workplace offerings as Dropbox Business and then unveil Dropbox Enterprise, a new top tier of the company’s file-sharing and collaboration tools geared toward the largest corporate users. To spotlight the market Dropbox was targeting, Salesforce chief Marc Benioff and Hewlett Packard Enterprise CEO Meg Whitman were to join Dropbox executives onstage.
But late into the evening the night before, Dropbox CEO Drew Houston was eager for his keynote speech to mention products users might tap at home, rather than work. He had to be talked out of it, said Marc Leibowitz, who was vice president of partnerships and platform at Dropbox at the time. Executives wanted to “stay on message” and emphasize the business-focused nature of the products being unveiled, he said.