Min Kao

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Min H. Kao
Born 1949 (age 66–67)
Zhushan, Taiwan
Alma mater National Taiwan University (BS)
University of Tennessee (MS; PhD)
Occupation Co-founder of Garmin
Known for co-founder of the Garmin GPS company
Net worth US$2.6 billion (May 2015)[1]
Children 2
Jen Kao

Min H. Kao (simplified Chinese: 高民环; traditional Chinese: 高民環; pinyin: Gāo Mínhuán) is an American businessman. He is the co-founder of Garmin Corporation with Gary Burrell. As of May 2015, his personal wealth was estimated at $2.6 billion.[1]

Early life[edit]

Min H. Kao was born in 1949 in a small town in Taiwan called Zhushan in Nantou.[citation needed] He attended college in Taiwan and received his doctorate in the US.[2]


Before founding Garmin, Min Kao served as a systems analyst at Teledyne Systems. Min Kao graduated from National Taiwan University with a bachelor's degree, then studied at the University of Tennessee, where he earned his master's and PhD degrees in electrical engineering and was involved in research for NASA and the U.S. Army.

In 2005, Kao gave $17.5 million to the College of Engineering of the University of Tennessee, $12.5 million of which was designated for the construction of a new facility.[3] In May 2007, groundbreaking ceremonies were conducted for the new Min Kao Electrical Engineering and Computer Science Building. The building was dedicated in March 2012.[4]


  1. ^ a b "Min Kao". Forbes. Retrieved 14 May 2015. 
  2. ^ Karmin, Craig (January 6, 2010). "CEO of GPS Maker Locates a New Home". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved March 19, 2013. 
  3. ^ Min Kao Home page at Univ of Tennessee[dead link]
  4. ^ "UT and Min Kao Dedicate New Engineering Building", University of Tennessee news, March 14, 2012

External links[edit]