Interesting short interview with Jack Dangermond, founder and CEO of Esri on how he founded the company. Key quotes:
I went on to Harvard and got very interested in computers and studying the earth’s landscape. After school, my wife and I moved back home to Redlands, California, and started working in our own very modest way. Redlands is not a high-tech capital like Silicon Valley. But it allowed us to live cheaply in a $400-a-month apartment. We had $1,100 total when we incorporated Esri.
There’s a whole history to be written about Harvard in the 1960s (ie, the Harvard Lab for Computer Graphics). Esri’s own Arc News recently had an interesting and unusual piece by Carl Steinitz, who was at Harvard in the early days.
Peter Rogers and Carl Steinitz, Harvard 1967
Dangermond goes on to add:
Today, about 350,000 organizations use our tools. We have 9,000 employees worldwide and $912 million in revenue.
Very impressive numbers, which he attributes to being in a bit of a backwater, and not taking VC money. Not sure how the current employees and residents of Redlands, Ca (Esri’s hometown) will take to being characterized as living in a backwater, but it obviously works for them.