Intel has announced that the company’s former CEO and chairman, Andrew S. Grove, who was born in Hungary as András István Gróf, died today at age 79.
Grove was one of the key figures of the information age, and he was famous for his hard-charging management style, summed up as “only the paranoid survive.” He was present as a founding employee at Intel, alongside founders Robert Noyce, who died in 1990, and Gordon Moore, who still survives as Intel’s chairman emeritus. Not only did Grove play a key role in making Intel into the world’s biggest chip maker, he also set the pace for competing in what has become a $347 billion global industry.
Grove became Intel’s president in 1979 and took on the role of CEO in 1987. He served as chairman of the board from 1997 to 2005. He wrote best-selling books, including High Output Management (1983) and Only the Paranoid Survive (1999), which encapsulated his Darwinian philosophy and helped set Silicon Valley on a treadmill of relentless self-improvement. He spoke out on an array of public issues that made him into a larger-than-life personality. To this day, thanks in no small part to Grove, Intel makes some of the most intricate, complicated, and lucrative products on earth — all from silicon, or what would otherwise be worthless sand.