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Mark Nelson named new CEO of Tableau

With Adam Selipsky headed to AWS, Mark Nelson has been named the new chief executive officer of Tableau. Nelson had been Tableau's head of product development since 2018.

Mark Nelson has been named the new president and CEO of Tableau.

In the wake of news that CEO Adam Selipsky is leaving Tableau on March 23 to become the new CEO of Amazon Web Services later this year, Salesforce, the parent company of Tableau after the CRM giant acquired the analytics vendor in June 2019, wasted no time in naming his successor.

A spokesperson from Tableau confirmed Nelson's appointment via email. Nelson takes over effective immediately.

Nelson was previously Tableau's executive vice president of product development after joining the vendor in 2018 from SAP Concur, where he had been chief technology officer.

"With Adam Selipsky leaving Tableau to pursue an opportunity outside of the company, Mark Nelson has been appointed President and CEO of Tableau," Tableau said in a statement. "With 25 years of enterprise software experience, Mark has been on the Tableau leadership team for three years and he has deep relationships with our customers and employees."

Selipsky's departure coming close to two years after Tableau was acquired by Salesforce for $15.7 billion is not unexpected, according to Doug Henschen, principal analyst at Constellation Research.

"No surprise to me that Adam, a business leader, is moving on following the transition period," he said. "The Salesforce management team can run the business side of Tableau."

Mark Nelson is a software guy with deep engineering, architectural and technology expertise. He clearly knows how to align architecture, technology and product with business objectives.
Doug HenschenPrincipal analyst, Constellation Research

Meanwhile, Nelson's experience developing software and leading product development efforts, as well as sitting on several software company boards, makes him a logical successor to Selipsky, Henschen continued.

"Mark Nelson is a software guy with deep engineering, architectural and technology expertise," he said. "He clearly knows how to align architecture, technology and product with business objectives."

Selipsky's departure from Tableau for AWS was made public in a blog post by Andy Jassy, who is the current CEO of AWS and will replace Jeff Bezos as Amazon's CEO. Selipsky is scheduled to join AWS on May 17 and spend the next few weeks working alongside Jassy before taking over as CEO of AWS later during the third quarter.

Selipsky joined Tableau as CEO in 2016 after spending the previous 11 years at AWS.

During his tenure at Tableau, he not only oversaw the vendor's sale to Salesforce but also helped Tableau quadruple in value with strategic moves such as transitioning from perpetual licenses to subscription licensing, improving its augmented intelligence capabilities and boosting its presence in the cloud.

Former Tableau CEO Adam Selipsky is shown in 2020 during Tableau's virtual user conference.
With Adam Selipsky (pictured) headed to AWS, Mark Nelson is the new CEO of Tableau.

Most recently, on the same day his departure from Tableau was revealed, the analytics and BI vendor unveiled a significant integration with Salesforce's Einstein Discovery that will enable Tableau users to develop predictive models.

Before his stint at SAP Concur, Nelson spent 17 years at Oracle, where he last served as vice president and architect and was responsible for the vendor's cloud infrastructure.

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