Ed Esber

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Edward M. Esber, Jr.
Born 1952
Cleveland, Ohio, US

Edward M. Esber, Jr. (born 1952) is semi-retired in Park City, UT. Ed spends his time helping the State of Utah, Utah Law enforcement and the Silicon Slopes entrepreneur community in Utah. [1]


As a PC industry veteran, he pioneered the marketing and distribution of personal computer productivity software. Afterwards, he did seminal work on the integration of computers and multimedia; the integration of computers, toys and learning; the integration of computers, communication and telephony; the mobilization of email and internet access and personal computer mobility. He served on the boards of companies that introduced the first hard disk add on card for PCs, the first MP3 player, the first DVR and the first tablet computer.


Edward Esber graduated with a BS computer engineering degree from Case Institute of Technology in 1974. He later earned a MS in electrical engineering from Syracuse University while working with IBM in 1976.[2] He then went on to earn a MBA from Harvard Business School, in 1978.

Early life and career[edit]

Esber was born in Cleveland, Ohio, the oldest of eight children.

He worked as an engineer/programmer in IBM's System Product Devision and in product makreting at Texas Instruments[3] Personal Computer and Consumer Products Division.

In 1979, Dan Flystra recruited Esber to run worldwide sales and marketing for Person Software (later renamed VisiCorp).[4] While there, he helped manage distribution of the first micro-software program, Visicalc.[4] VisiCalc was credited with sparking the explosive growth of Apple Computer and the beginning of the Personal Computer Software revolution.

Ashton Tate[edit]

Esber took over Ashton Tate in 1985. During his time as CEO, Ashton-Tate acquired several companies, including Decision Resources and MultiMate. Ashton-Tate grew from $40M in revenue to over $300M during his tenure.

While at Ashton-Tate, Esber had several strategic merger discussions with the likes of Lotus and Microsoft which were all rejected by a strategically inept board. Ultimately, he initiated the company's sale to Borland.

In May 1990, he stepped down as Chairman over disagreements on strategy, mergers and acquisitions with the board.

Creative Labs[edit]

In 1994, he was appointed CEO of Creative Labs.[5]

Creative Insights/SoloPoint[edit]

Esber was a founder and CEO of a Computer Toys company called Creative Insights and the CEO of SoloPoint[6], a telephony products company.

Angel Investment/Venture Capital[edit]

Esber was a founding member in 1997 of The Angels Forum, a professional, Silicon Valley based group of angel investors. He also is a member of the management team of The Halo Funds.[7][8]

Current Endeavors[edit]

Esber is currently helping the State of Utah continue its explosive growth by serving on the Utah Capital Investment Corporation, the Utah Technology Initiative Advisory Board and past member of the Utah Small Business Growth Initiative Board. He also serves as the Chairman of the Utah 1033 Foundation[9] which provides financial support for the families of Utah law enforcement officers killed in the line of duty and the Summit County Sheriff’s Citizen’s Advisory Board.

Honors and awards[edit]

  • BusinessWeek, "25 Executives to Watch,” April 15, 1988.[10]
  • Computer Reseller News, 1985&1986, "Industry's 25 Most Influential Execs." [11]
  • Esquire Magazine, 1986 Register Honoree, Business and Industry.[12]
  • So Ca Executive, "The Southland's 100 Outstanding Leaders in 1986." [13]


Esber currently sits on the boards of PanTerra Networks and is co-chair of the emeriti trustee committee of Case Western Reserve University. In the past Esber has served on the boards of Activision, Ashton Tate, Quantum Corporation, SonicBlue. Pansophic Systems, Integrated Circuits System Technology and many private companies.[14][15]


  1. ^ "Ed Esber's website". 
  2. ^ Grier, David (November 19, 2004). "Oral History of Edward M. Esber, Jr" (PDF). 
  3. ^ Inc, Ziff Davis (1985-01-22). PC Mag. Ziff Davis, Inc. 
  4. ^ a b Inc, InfoWorld Media Group (1984-07-02). InfoWorld. InfoWorld Media Group, Inc. 
  5. ^ Rajendran, Joseph (May 18, 1993). "Creative Tech hires one of Silicon Valley's top guns" (PDF). Business Times. Retrieved August 18, 2015. 
  6. ^ "Phone Improvement". 
  7. ^ "The Angels Forum website". 
  8. ^ "The Halo Funds website". 
  9. ^ "Board of Directors". 
  10. ^ "25 Executives To Watch". Businessweek. April 15, 1988. p. 150. 
  11. ^ "The Industry's 25 Most Influential Execs". Computer Reseller News [1]. 1985–1986.  External link in |magazine= (help)
  12. ^ "The 1986 Esquire Register Honorees (Business & Industry)". Esquire [2]. December 1986. p. 278.  External link in |magazine= (help)
  13. ^ "The Executive of the Year: 100 Outstanding Leaders (Computer & Technology". The Executive of Southern California. Jan–Feb 1987. p. 50. 
  14. ^ "Quantum Corporation website". 
  15. ^ "Panterra Networks website". 

External links[edit]