Thomas J. Watson, Sr.
Though Watson had to personally secure a loan to reshape the company’s finances, he turned it around in a matter of years and officially incorporated it as International Business Machines in 1923. Over the next 30 years of Watson’s tenure, IBM brought out a wide array of successful products, many of them being the first of their kind on the market, including typewriters, automatic summary punches, test scoring machines and others. IBM’s biggest achievement however, came when it introduced its first computer in 1952, well behind competitors like Sperry Rand. Because of IBM’s big company status, however, it was free to heavily invest in research and development, and by 1956 it had surpassed its competitors in the computer market.