Meet the Indian CEOs heading Silicon Valley tech giants, from Parag Agarwal to Sundar Pichai

Meet the Indian CEOs of the US tech giants.

In the west, Indians are stereotyped as crazy smart in mathematics and science, and for good reason. We are quite good with technology and have a huge number of tech professionals coming out of universities every year. Some of them end up heading the biggest tech corporations globally. Recently, Parag Agarwal, an IIT Bombay alumni, has joined the growing list of Indian-origin CEOs leading the world’s biggest tech companies. He joins the ranks of Sundar Pichai, Satya Nadella, and many others who lead Silicon Valley giants. Let’s take a look at the India-born CEOs of tech goliaths.

Parag Agarwal – Twitter

Twitter parag agarwal

IIT-B alumni Parag Agarwal joined Twitter as Distinguished Software Engineer in 2011, one of the first members of the company’s Revenue Product Engineering team. Before joining Twitter, Agarwal worked with Microsoft, Yahoo, and AT&T Labs. In 2016, Agarwal was appointed as the Chief Technology Officer of the company and then succeeded Jack Dorsey as the CEO of the microblogging platform in November 2021. 

In his statement to the public and the company, Dorsey said, “My trust in Parag as Twitter’s CEO is deep. His work over the past 10 years has been transformational. I’m deeply grateful for his skill, heart, and soul. It’s his time to lead.”

According to a recent filing on Monday, Agarwal will be getting an annual salary of USD 1 million, plus bonuses, restricted stock units, and performance-based stock units valued at USD 12.5 million.

Sundar Pichai – Google

Sundar Pichai is one of the biggest names in the tech industry and was appointed as Google’s CEO in 2015. Later, in 2019, Pichai also got named the head of Aplhabet Inc., Google’s parent company.

Pichai graduated in metallurgical engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur, one of the most prestigious engineering colleges in India. He holds an M.S. from Stanford University and an MBA from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.

He joined Google in 2004 after working at McKinsey and Company for a short time. Pichai overlooked Google’s client software products, including Google Chrome, ChromeOS, Google Drive, Gmail, and Google Maps. In 2014, Pichai took Android into his hands before becoming the new head of the company.

According to a filing by Google in 2020, Pichai received a base salary of USD 2 million as the CEO of Google and Alphabet. In addition to his base salary, Pichai also got a compensation of 5 million categorised as “all other compensation.

Satya Nadella – Microsoft

Satyanarayan Nadella (Satya Nadella) joined Microsoft in 1992 after having a short stint with Sun Microsystems. Before he was appointed as Redmont giant’s CEO in 2014, replacing long-time Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, he was leading the Azure enterprise cloud computing division at the company.

Satya Nadella has led some of the major projects at Microsoft. One of his biggest achievements is helping Microsoft transition to cloud computing, leading the development of one of the most comprehensive cloud infrastructures globally. He also put an end to Microsoft’s mobile OS efforts and started a partnership with Google to promote Microsoft products in Android.

Nadella completed his graduation in electrical engineering from the Manipal Institute of Technology in Karnataka. After that, he moved to the United States to pursue M.S. in Computer Science from the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee, later getting an MBA degree from the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business.

In the fiscal year 2021, Nadella received a base salary of USD 2.5 million. However, his total compensation for 2021, which ended on June 30th, was USD 49.9 million.

Arvind Krishna – IBM

Arvind Krishna joined IBM in 1990 and was appointed as the CEO in 2020. Krishna was one of the minds behind IBM’s acquisition of Red Hat in 2019, worth USD 34 billion.

Krishna completed his bachelor’s from the Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur in electrical engineering. Later, he went to the United States to pursue a Ph.D. in electrical engineering from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign.

As per a 2020 regulatory filing, Krishna’s base salary last year was USD 1.5 million.

Shantanu Narayen – Adobe

Shantanu Narayen was appointed as Adobe’s CEO in 2007. Narayen joined Adobe as the Senior Vice President of Worldwide Product development in 1998. Later in 2001, he got appointed as V.P. of Worldwide Product, and in 2005 he got promoted to the position of COO. Before moving to Adobe, Shantanu has been part of Apple from 1989 to 1995. In 1996, he co-founded a new venture Pictra Inc, a photo digital photo-sharing platform.

Shantanu pursued his bachelor’s from University College of Engineering, Osmania University, Hyderabad, in electronics and communication engineering. Narayen completed his Masters in Computer Science from Bowling Green State University, Ohio, in 1986. In 1993, Shantanu Narayen received an MBA degree from the Haas School of Business, University of California, Berkeley.

Raghu Raghuraman – VMWare

Earlier this year, in April, Raghu Raghuraman was appointed as the CEO of VMWare. Raghu Raghuraman joined VMWare back in 2003, overlooking some major products, including ESX and vSphere. Raghuraman pursued his Masters in Electrical Engineering from IIT B. He also holds an MBA degree from the Wharton School of Business. Before joining VMWare, Raghuraman has worked with AOL, Bang Networks, and Netscape in product management and marketing roles.