New from Box: industry-specific services and workflow management

Box CEO Aaron Levie at BoxWorks 2014

Box is launching a suite of services and apps tailored specifically for different industries as well as a new workflow management tool, Box CEO Aaron Levie said Wednesday. The new product lines, dubbed Box for Industries and Box Workflow, highlight how Los Altos., Calif.-based company is attempting distinguish itself in the file-sync-and-share space and to target content management and collaboration.

With Box for Industries, the company will support the retail, healthcare and media and entertainment industries and eventually hopes to target every major industry, Levie said during his BoxWorks 2104 keynote. The service is essentially a customized version of the core Box platform that is tailored to meet the needs of a particular field. For example, Box for Industries for healthcare comes allows users to access content on their mobile devices that adheres to HIPAA standards and will help doctors collaborate with one another on research.

Box consultants as well as partners in each industry — like Stanford Health Care for medical — will help its clients craft a custom Box platform that meets their needs.

Box CEO Aaron Levie hugs actor Jared Leto onstage at BoxWorks 2014. Photo by Jonathan Vanian/Gigaom

Box CEO Aaron Levie hugs actor Jared Leto onstage at BoxWorks 2014. Photo by Jonathan Vanian/Gigaom

The Box Workflow tool, slated to hit the market in 2015, will theoretically streamline collaboration when it comes to notifications and document access. As an example of how Box Workflow operates, senior product manager Annie Pearl explained that a company can set up timed notifications on time-sensitive documents, like a contract, so that users will be pinged by Box through their mobile devices or email, and not be caught off guard when that document expires.

Box isn’t alone in trying to gain a foot into the enterprise collaboration market—a crowded space in which Amazon, Google and Microsoft are all targeting in as well. And it’s not just the big guys who are making moves in enterprise collaboration; a host of startups — like Slack and HipChat — are each promoting their own take on workplace collaboration.

Box still has that long-awaited IPO looming in the background, and it remains to be seen how Wall Street takes to its news. In late August, Box brought on former Salesforce.com and Lifelock executive Villi Illtchev as SVP to help direct the company’s acquisitions strategy.

Be sure to listen to Levie’s recent appearance on the The Structure Show, in which he touches on the Box’s IPO plans, how it’s trying to distinguish itself and why he thinks Silicon Valley is experiencing a revolution.

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