Thursday, November 03, 2005

Matthew Szulik on Paris Hilton

Had the chance to be there when Matthew spoke. (25 October, 2005 – Annual Graduate Symposium, NCSU)
Excerpt from our Newsletter -
Luncheon keynote presenter Matthew Szulik, chairman, chief executive officer and president of Red Hat, focused on brand management.
"Paris Hilton, economic development, and globalization have a lot in common, if you think about it," Szulik said. "This woman clearly has vision. She is a great entrepreneur, understands markets and how to build brand, how to build a business, to create new product offerings," he said. "I think this story is fascinating, especially for a very young woman in a multicultural global environment. ... One of the comments you hear about her is that she is very hard working. "
He related Hilton's development of a brand around herself as a person to Red Hat's development of a $500 million company based on open source technology - something that is free.
Investors initially questioned how the company would make money if it was giving away its technology. Speaking directly to the graduate students in the audience, Szulik said: "You've been trained to take good ideas and keep them to yourself. That's not the world we live in today. Society is increasingly recognizing the value of collaboration and transparency; we all value a high degree of transparency."
Szulik has met with leaders of the Czech Republic, Ukraine, Belarus, and other countries where Red Hat's open source technology is seen as the vehicle for raising living standards.
One of Red Hat's challenges as a global leader in open source technology is "hiring the right people. Some people focus on raising the stock price. We are trying to build a company that goes on and on; we want to change the world, improve society, because your children and your children's children will need access to information."

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