The rise in the number of Indian-born CEOs in the tech world is a big win for Indians worldwide. Indian-born tech experts make up the most significant percentage of immigrant tech-company founders worldwide. Specifically speaking of the United States, Indians comprise 1% of the country’s total population and 6% of Silicon Valley’s workforce. In addition, India has some of the most outstanding technical institutes that produce thousands of potential CEOs every year. Such success of Indians in the global tech industry makes the Indians more ambitious to choose tech as their career to make their way to Silicon Valley.
1. Sundar Pichai
Sundar Pichai, CEO of the global tech giant Google & Alphabet, the parent company of Google, is currently one of the most influential figures in the tech industry. He was born and raised in India and pursued a Bachelor of Technology from IIT Kharagpur. After which, he went to the United States to pursue a master’s and then pursue an MBA. He started his career as a materials engineer at McKinsey & Company and joined Google as the head of product management and development in 2004. After joining Google, Sundar helped launch successful products like Google Maps, Google Lens, Google Translator, Google Photos, Google Assistant, Google Home, and several other projects under the Google umbrella. Sundar was appointed the CEO of Google in 2015 and rose to become the CEO of Alphabet Inc., the parent company of Google, in 2019. Currently, Sundar Pichai is one of the highest-paid CEOs globally, with an annual salary of $2.06 million and a net worth of $1.5 billion. Besides his base salary, he also receives bonuses and stock grants that make up most of his income. According to Marketwatch, in 2021, he held Alphabet stock worth over $275 million altogether.
2. Satya Nadela
Satya Nadella is the CEO of Microsoft Corporation, one of the world’s largest and most successful technology companies. Nadella was born in India and received a Bachelor’s in Electrical Engineering from Manipal Institute of Technology. He then went to the United States to get his Masters and MBA. Nadella began his career at Sun Microsystems, an American computer & software company. In 1992, he joined Microsoft as an engineer and, since then, has actively played an essential role in various leadership positions. In addition to being the vice president of R&D for Microsoft’s Online Services Division, he also led the company’s Business Division. His leadership significantly increased Microsoft’s Cloud Services from $16 million in 2011 to over $20 billion in 2013. He was appointed CEO of the company in 2014. During that time, Microsoft’s market cap was about $381 billion. Since then, Microsoft has been experiencing massive success, acquiring giant companies like LinkedIn in 2016 for $26.2 billion and GitHub in 2018 for $7.5 billion. Under Nadela’s supervision, Microsoft, one of the most successful tech companies globally, is valued at more than 2 trillion dollars. In November 2021, Satya sold 838,584 shares in Microsoft over only two days, resulting in a yield of $285 million. Nadella’s annual salary from Microsoft is 2.5 million dollars, while in 2021, he received a total of 49.9 million dollars in Salary, Stock Awards, Cash bonus, and other compensations.
3. Arvind Krishna
Arvind Krishna, the CEO of one of the largest International Technology corporations- IBM, is an Indian-born genius who has successfully carried out the role of Chairman and CEO since January 2021. Born to an army officer father, Arvind Krishna grew up in Andhra Pradesh, India. He received a Bachelor’s in Technology in electrical engineering from IIT Kanpur. After that, he moved to the United States to earn a Ph.D. in electrical engineering. In 1990, Arvind Krishna began his career at IBM’s Thomas J. Watson Research Center. After working there for 18 years, he was promoted to General Manager in IBM’s Information Management software systems and technology group. Then in 2015, he was promoted to senior vice president of IBM Research and later chosen as the senior vice president of IBM’s cloud and cognitive software division. Under his supervision, IBM reached new heights of success, building and expanding new markets for IBM in artificial intelligence, cloud, quantum computing, and blockchain. His supervision has brought a series of bold transformations and delivered proven business results. Under his stern leadership, IBM recently acquired Red Hat for $34 billion. He made his most significant trade ever on 11 December 2021 when he sold 24,996 units of stock in IBM worth over $3.1 million. Arvind Krishna earned 1.3 million dollars as annual salary in 2020 and received additional 15.6 million dollars in stock and other incentives.
4. Shantanu Narayen
Shantanu Narayen, the CEO of Adobe, an Indian, graduated from Osmania University, Hyderabad, with a bachelor’s degree in electronics engineering. He then went to the United States to pursue a master’s degree in computer science followed by another master’s degree in business administration. Shantanu started his career at companies like Apple and Silicon Graphics as a product developer. Then he co-founded his photo-sharing startup called Pictra. Collaboration between Adobe and Pictra led to Shantanu joining Adobe. He joined Adobe in 1998 and became its president and COO in 2005, CEO in 2007, and chairman of the board in 2017. As the CEO, Shantanu has transformed the company into an industry leader by introducing a cloud-based subscription model for its creative suite, establishing the global standard for digital documents and the digital art & publishing industry. As a leader, Shantanu puts efforts into creating innovation for everyone, building a more productive workforce, and powering digital business. Mr. Narayen also serves as a lead independent director on the board of directors of the multinational pharmaceutical corporation Pfizer. He has also served the Former US president Barack Obama in his Management Advisory Board. Shantanu Narayen currently has a net worth of $286 Million. In 2020 Mr. Narayen had an annual salary of 1 million dollars and his total earnings for the year was 45.89 million dollars, including salary, stock & other forms of compensation.
5. Parag Agarwal
The youngest and the recent addition to the list of Indian-origin Tech CEOs is Twitter CEO, Parag Agarwal. The 37-year-old Indian-born engineer has succeeded Twitter co-founder Jack Dorsey since 29th November 2021. Completing his bachelor’s in engineering in computer science from IIT Mumbai, he moved to the United States for further studies. Before joining Twitter, Parag worked in some of the most prominent tech companies like Microsoft, AT&T, and Yahoo, where his work was primarily research-oriented. In 2011, while pursuing his Ph.D., Parag joined Twitter. His work at Twitter initially focused on ad-related products, and then he shifted to artificial intelligence. In 2018, after he was promoted to the role of Twitter CTO, he worked to increase tweet relevance through artificial intelligence. In 2021, Jack Dorsey announced his resignation from the post of CEO of Twitter and announced the appointment of Parag Agrawal as his successor. Parag’s salary as CEO is expected to be $1 million annually and stock compensation worth $12.5 million.