Haas Newsroom


Adobe CEO Shantanu Narayen Honored by UC Berkeley’s Haas School of Business

November 7, 2008

Media Contact:
Ute S. Frey
UC Berkeley Haas School of Business

Shantanu Narayen, CEO of Adobe Systems, will be honored by the University of California, Berkeley’s Haas School of Business as Business Leader of the Year for 2008 at a private gala tonight, November 7, in San Francisco.


Narayen graduated from the Haas School’s Evening & Weekend MBA Program in 1993 and serves on the school’s advisory board.


The Haas School named Narayen as Business Leader of the Year 2008 for executing a vision that spurs financial prosperity, fosters employee development, and fulfills its responsibility to the community. Each year, Haas honors a member of its community who exemplifies the type of business and thought leader the school is committed to creating.


Although he has been CEO for less than a year, Narayen has been instrumental in building Adobe into a 7,000-employee tech giant whose software sits on more than 700 million computers and devices worldwide. As CEO, Narayen has been focused on steering Adobe through an increasingly Internet-focused software landscape – and developing leaders within the company to tackle that challenge.


“Narayen’s success at Adobe is an inspiration to all of us at Haas,” says Haas School Dean Richard K. Lyons, who will present the award. “We are so fortunate to have such an innovative, forward-looking leader as an exemplar for our community.”


Narayen joined Adobe in 1998 as vice president of engineering after working at Apple and Silicon Graphics. He became executive vice president of worldwide products in 2001 and was promoted in 2005 to president and COO. He became CEO in December 2007.


Under his guidance, Adobe’s sales reached a record $3.2 billion in 2007. The third release of Adobe’s Creative Suite – an integrated collection of desktop applications such as Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign – outsold its precursor by 40 percent. Narayen also co-managed the $3.4 billion acquisition of then-competitor Macromedia in 2005.


Narayen also emphasizes preserving the core values of community responsibility instilled by Adobe’s co-founders. Adobe donates 1 percent of profits to charity and encourages employees to do the same through its matching gift program. Adobe recently launched the Adobe Foundation, a private nonprofit foundation dedicated to driving social change and improving Adobe’s surrounding communities. It also has expanded its Adobe Youth Voices program, which empowers youth in underprivileged areas by teaching them to share their experiences through visual media.


More on Narayen's award at http://www.haas.berkeley.edu/groups/pubs/calbusiness/current/Fall08.pdf.