Concept

Jimmy Treybig

Summary
James G. Treybig is the founder of Tandem Computers, which designed and manufactured the first fault tolerant computers, in 1974. These pioneering computers were marketed to transaction processing customers, who used them for ATMs, banks, stock exchanges, phone companies, 911 and military applications. Treybig grew up in Bellaire, Texas, and attended Bellaire High School from 1956 to 1959. He then went to Rice University, where he received a B.A. degree in 1963 and a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering in 1964; following that he went to Stanford Graduate School of Business, where he earned an MBA in 1968. Treybig's first job after graduating from Rice was as a salesman for Texas Instruments. After receiving his MBA, he worked for Hewlett-Packard (HP) in 1968, serving as marketing section manager on the HP 3000 project, the first commercial minicomputer with a full featured operating system with time-sharing, released in 1973. In 1973, he joined Kleiner Perkins venture capital company. In 1974, he founded Tandem Computers, funded in part by Kleiner Perkins. Treybig served as CEO of Tandem Computers from 1974 to 1996. The business plan included detailed ideas for building a corporate culture reflecting Treybig's values, such as paid six week sabbaticals every four years for all employees, an annual gift of 100 shares of Tandem stock to all employees, a weekly all-employee party, and a world-wide closed circuit monthly telecast to keep employees informed. Under his leadership, Tandem delivered its first product in 1976, first issued public stock in 1977, and in 1980 was ranked by Inc. magazine as the fastest-growing public company in America. When Treybig left the company in 1996, Tandem was a $2.3 billion company employing approximately 8,000 people worldwide. He was succeeded by Roel Pieper. Tandem was acquired by Compaq in 1997, and Compaq was merged with Hewlett-Packard in 2002. The product line was later merged into Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) when HP split.
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