Salesforce (CRM) CEO: Ahrendts Next Apple (AAPL) Chief

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- TheStreet's Rocco Pendola may have called it two weeks ago, but a Silicon Valley heavyweight has thrown his support behind speculation on the next Apple (AAPL) CEO, Angela Ahrendts.

Marc Benioff, co-founder of leading cloud computing company Salesforce (CRM), wrote on Twitter that Ahrendts may well be the next Apple CEO.

Current Apple chief executive Cook announced in mid-October the tech giant had hired Ahrendts to head its retail stores and online stores, in a newly created role. In her current position as chief executive of Burberry, Ahrendts has helped create one of the world's most successful luxury brands. Since 2006, shares of the London-based fashion house have tripled.

Ahrednts hasn't been shy to use technology to elevate the retail experience. In September, Burberry released a 15-minute fashion show video shot entirely on Apple's iPhone 5s as a promotion for each of their new lines.

In 2012, Salesforce was key in Burberry's push to build a social brand. Burberry Chat, powered by Salesforce, facilitated dialogue between management and employees, and sales and customers. "We've opened up what we call the store of the future," said Ahrendts in a video promoting the service. "The next generation is growing up in a digital world, and they speak social."

This intuitive customer-first approach to retail is driving much of the excitement behind the hire. Apple's retail stores, the first of which opened in 2001, are widely considered best-in-class for gadget sales and support.

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