Former Symantec CEO Joins Microsoft Board

John Thompson (Source: Microsoft)
Microsoft on Monday named John W. Thompson, who for 10 years served as CEO of Symantec Corp., to the company's board of directors.

Thompson joins Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates, Netflix CEO Reed Hastings and six others on the 10-seat Microsoft board.

Thompson is currently the CEO of Virtual Instruments, a San Jose, Calif.-based infrastructure-optimization company that provides solutions designed to ensure the stability of virtualized applications or applications based in private clouds. For the past three years, he has also been "an active investor in early-stage technology companies in Silicon Valley," according to Microsoft's announcement.

During Thompson's tenure as its CEO from 1999 to 2009, the historically acquisitive Symantec undertook a streak of major buys, including that of software storage company Veritas in 2005 for $13.5 billion -- one of the largest acquisitions in the software industry at the time. Two years later, the security software giant acquired Altiris, a provider of software that helps companies manage network endpoints, for a little over $1 billion. In those 10 years, Symantec's revenue ballooned from $632 million to $6.2 billion.

Prior to working at Symantec, Thompson spent 27 years at IBM as general manager of IBM Americas, according to his LinkedIn profile.

"John brings a wealth of experience, from enterprise customers to individual consumers, as well as the insights that come from running a successful large global software company and a fast-emerging startup," Ballmer said in a prepared statement. "He will be a great addition to our board."

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Gladys Rama (@GladysRama3) is the editorial director of Converge360.