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This high-flying tech executive's life changed when he sent Marc Benioff an email during an internship at Salesforce

You might not instantly recognize George Hu's name, but he quietly occupies a spot among some of Silicon Valley's most influential executives.

The 43-year-old is the current COO of Twilio, the public cloud communications platform which counts firms like Uber and Deliveroo as clients, and is valued at more than $16 billion.

But if it wasn't for a single email Hu sent to billionaire Salesforce founder, Marc Benioff, while interning at the company back in 2002, his career could have panned out very differently.

Marc Benioff, the billionaire cofounder of Salesforce, has exerted a profound influence on George Hu's career.

This meant that Salesforce stopped spending money on print advertising and began investing more in salespeople, to carry out more follow-ups.

"So, towards the end of my time at Salesforce, the COO role became the logical outflow; the natural function for me, because I had a personal view of every aspect of the business.

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