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Symantec Corporation NASDAQ: SYMC, founded in 1982, is an international corporation which sells computer software, particularly in the realms of Computer security and information management. Headquartered in Cupertino, California, USA, Symantec has operations in over 40 countries and is part of the NASDAQ-100 and Fortune 500. Symantec is one of the ten largest software companies in the world.
Gary Hendrix founded the company in 1982 with the help of a National Science Foundation grant. Symantec was originally focused on artificial intelligence-related projects, and Hendrix hired several Stanford University natural language processing researchers as the company's first employees. Symantec released its first product, Q&A, in 1985. Symantec first became well-known as the publisher of Q & A, a dual-mode product that was both a word processor and a database. During the 1990s, Symantec switched focus away from development of its own products and towards acquisition of other companies. An early purchase gave Symantec ownership of Norton Utilities, created in the mid-1980s by software engineer Peter Norton. At one time Symantec was also known for its development tools, particularly the THINK Pascal, THINK C, Symantec C++, and Visual Cafe packages that were popular on the Macintosh and IBM PC compatible platforms; they exited this business in the late-1990s as competitors such as Metrowerks, Microsoft, and Borland gained significant market share.