The Wall Street Journal Europe Selects Graphisoft's President as Leading Central European Executive in 1998
Munich/Budapest, January 29, 1999
The top ten executives of Central Europe were announced In the Central European Economic Review of the venerable business periodical The Wall Street Journal Europe (January 25), and Graphisoft President Gábor Bojár leads the list. The CEER article profiles the 10 Central European executives whose performance most stood out in 1998.
For Central Europe, 1998 was possibly the most traumatic in the decade since the Berlin Wall fell. Stock markets tumbled, the ruble devalued, and the region was greatly affected by these factors. A few of the region's more innovative executives were asked how they turned adversity to their favor. One of these managerial talents is Gábor Bojár, Graphisoft's president.
Background on Gábor Bojár and Graphisoft In 1998, Gábor Bojár launched Graphisoft on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange Neuer Markt. Also in 1998, Graphisoft's flagship product ARCHICAD for TeamWork won the Software Publishers Association¹s annual Codie Award for best groupware. The "Oscar" of the software industry, Codie Awards were also awarded to Microsoft, Netscape and Claris. Furthermore, Graphisoft opened Budapest's newest technology park on a 73.000 m² site on the banks of the river Danube. Microsoft Hungary is among the park's other high tech tenants.
The Wall Street Journal's John Reed writes: "When Bojár started the company back in 1982, he designed his innovative architectural software to run on personal computers because he and his partners did not have access to the mainframes then prevalent. PCs are today ubiquitous and so is Graphisoft's software. "We weren't visionaries", Bojár laughs, "we were lucky."
"What makes Graphisoft hot isn't necessarily cutting-edge technology - though users praise its flagship ARCHICAD package for its elegance and ease of use - not even the smarts of Mr. Bojár and his colleagues", writes Reed. "It is Graphisoft"s ability to speak the language - and anticipate the needs - of its clients. ARCHICAD allows architects to draft and update building plans in multiple formats, including a "virtual walkthrough," in real time - from a single database. This innovative approach helps building designers save time and avoid endless updating."
Sean Murphy, technology analyst with Nomura International PLC in London, deems Graphisoft "the most successful software product company to come out of Eastern Europe." According to Reed "Mr. Bojár has shown strength as a manager, too, most notably by avoiding the common mistake of refusing to relinquish control as his business grew. To keep a grip on Graphisoft¹s increasingly far-flung operations, Mr. Bojár has devolved authority to a group of vice presidents, each with broad managerial powers."
Other Top Executives
Also profiled on The Wall Street Journal's top ten list are executives from Poland (3), the Czech Republic (3), Russia (1) and two others from Hungary. Half of these top CEOs founded their own companies; only one other executive is involved in the high tech industry.
How the selections were made
In order to select the Top Ten, CEER consulted leading bankers, esteemed business lecturers, headhunters, editors of business journals and venture capitalists.
About The Wall Street Journal
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Graphisoft is a leading provider of computer-aided design (CAD) software solutions for the architectural profession and the building industry. Founded in 1982, Graphisoft is ranked today among the largest AEC CAD software developers in the world, with 12 offices all over the world in addition to its headquarters. Graphisoft's flagship product, ARCHICAD, is used by more than 75,000 architects worldwide and distributed in 25 languages and 80 countries. Shares of Graphisoft are traded on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange Neuer Markt under the symbol GPH. More information about Graphisoft is available at www.graphisoft.com.