$3.8 billion Slack just poached a high-ranking Dropbox exec as it faces a new threat from Microsoft

Flickr/kk

Slack has hired Dropbox's Kevin Egan as its new head of North America sales, bringing in a seasoned veteran with over 10 years of enterprise sales experience, a source with knowledge of the matter told Business Insider.

Egan, who served as Dropbox's head of North America sales for the last four years, is the second high-profile sales hire this year for Slack, the $3.8 billion startup best known for its viral messaging app.

Earlier this year, it hired away Robert Frati from Salesforce as its first sales chief, after relying mostly on word-of-mouth without a big sales team to achieve its rocketship growth during its early years.

Prior to Dropbox, Egan worked at Salesforce for over 10 years in various sales positions. He will be reporting to Frati at Slack once he joins the company in January.

Both Slack and Dropbox declined to comment on this story.

Stiff competition

Screen Shot 2016 11 30 at 2.51.59 PMFlickr/kkThe move comes just as Slack faces stiffer competition from the likes of Microsoft, Facebook, and Atlassian.

Microsoft just launched a Slack-like messaging app called Teams last month, while Facebook came out with its own workplace service in October. Atlassian, the maker of another business messaging app HipChat, went public last year.

Egan's hiring should help Slack better-position itself in selling to the bigger enterprise companies. Although Slack likes to brag about its growth without a dedicated sales team, it's nearly impossible to sign big contracts unless you have direct salespeople on your team.

It's also a signal that Slack's long-awaited enterprise product may be getting closer to launching. The enterprise version of the service has been in development for two years, and is being tested among some large customers. But there have some question marks around its status and Slack's homepage still says its enterprise product is "coming soon."

Slack has over a million paid users and over four million daily active users. It said it's on track to generate $100 million in annual recurring revenue this year.

It's unclear what exactly made Egan want to leave Dropbox. But according to an article by The Information last year, Egan was demoted to a smaller role after the hirings of COO Dennis Woodside and global VP of revenue Thomas Hansen, as the company shied away from traditional enterprise sales tactics for a more reseller-focused approach.

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