New York: Two young corporate leaders of Indian origin have been ranked by Forbes magazine among 15 highest-paid chief executives officers in the US below the age of 45, making a cool $15.7 million per annum between them, not counting the millions more in stock options.
Meet Shantanu Narayen, 44, the chief executive of Adobe Systems since December 2007, and Francisco D'Souza, 39, chief executive of Cognizant Technology since January last year.
"Young chief executives are becoming an endangered species," Forbes said in the article dedicated to America's top-paid young chief executive officers in its latest issue.
"Since the height of tech boom in 2000, the number of CEOs aged 45 or younger at the helm of the 500 largest publicly-traded US companies has dropped more than half to 28 from 60, and just three haven't yet reached their 40th birthdays."
Quoting compensation experts, the magazine said proven leadership experience is ultimately what has lead to the mega bucks. "The guys on this list are certainly getting their shot. Better yet, they're getting paid."
Hyderabad-born Narayen makes $12 million per annum and ranks fifth on the list. Apart from the top-notch salary, he also has stock options that are worth $26.3 million at current rates.
Armed with a bachelor's degree in electronics engineering from the Osmania University in Hyderabad, he started his career with Apple Inc and then served Silicon Graphics.
Before joining Adobe in 1998, he was co-founder of Pictra Inc, an early pioneer of digital photo sharing over the Internet. In 2005, he led the $3.4 billion acquisition of Macromedia, to expand Adobe's software platform and solutions.
Narayan also has a master's degree in computer sciences from the Bowling Green State University and a master's degree in business administration from the Haas School of Business, Berkeley.
A son of an Indian diplomat, D'Souza makes $3.7 million per month and ranks 15th on the Forbes list. He also has stock options worth $23.82 million at current rates.
D'Souza was born in Nairobi and holds a bachelor of business administration degree from the University of East Asia in Hong Kong and a master's in the same stream from Carnegie-Mellon University.
He won the Economic Times Entrepreneur Award in 2005 and was a finalist at the Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year award in 2002.
Earlier in his career, D'Souza spent four years at various divisions of The Dun and Bradstreet Corp, holding key positions in marketing, strategic planning, and new business development in Germany, the US and India.