SAP Co-CEO Bill McDermott has an amazing “first job” story.He bought a business at age 16, a Long Island delicatessen—and he borrowed $5,500 to do it, he told an audience at a Churchill Club event in Silicon Valley last week, reports Eric Savitz at Forbes.
After buying the deli, he had to get all the neighbourhood kids to ignore the local 7-Eleven and buy stuff from his store instead. So he let them buy on credit. He also delivered food to homebound seniors.
Then he struck up a partnership with a video-game company to add games to the store in a separate room, splitting the take with his partner. In a few months, the games paid off his store.
He eventually sold the store and bought his parents a beach house.
He doesn’t even consider his stint as a retail entrepreneur his first real job. That would be his 17 years at Xerox, he said. He’s had a stellar career since he joined SAP since 2002, becoming the first American to hold the CEO title at the German software company. He’s been sharing the job with another non-German, Jim Hagemann Snabe since February 2010. (Snabe is from Denmark.)
They took over after the previous CEO, Léo Apotheker, was shown the door. And SAP has been rolling along ever since, introducing its most successful product ever, the Hana database, and spending billions on SuccessFactors and Ariba to plunge headlong into cloud computing.
Business Insider Emails & Alerts
Site highlights each day to your inbox.