Pierre Morad Omidyar

Pierre Morad Omidyar

|French-born American Iranian
date of birth : 21/06/1967 | date of death :
Born on June 21, 1967, Paris, Entrepreneur, Founder Chairman eBay Inc , Omidyar and his wife Pam are well-known philanthropists who founded Omidyar Network in 2004 in order to expand their efforts beyond non-profits to include for-profits and public policy.

Birth, Birthplace, Time of birth:

Born June 21, 1967 in Paris, France.

Father's name: -
Mother's name: Elahé Mir-Djalali Omidyar
Brother: -
Sister: -
Spouse: Pamela Kerr Omidyar
Children: Three

Personal Information:

Website: http://omidyargroup.com

Life events:

Pierre Morad Omidyar business figure, entrepreneur, philanthropist Born on June 21, 1967 in Paris, France. His mother Elahé Mir-Djalali Omidyar, who did her doctorate in linguistics at the Sorbonne, is herself a well-known academic. His father was an Iranian surgeon. The family moved to Maryland (US) when he was six, because of his father accepted a residency at Johns Hopkins University Medical Center. He wrote his first computer program at age 14, to catalog books for the school library. He graduated from Tufts University in 1988 with a degree in computer science and went to work for a company that developed Macintosh software. Later, he worked for the Apple subsidiary Claris, then helped start a software company in 1991 called Ink Development Corp. The company later changed its name to eShop and was purchased by Microsoft in 1996. While living and working in the San Francisco Bay Area, he met and married Pamela Wesley, a graduate student in biology who later embarked on a career as a management consultant. Omidyar was 28 when he sat down over a long holiday weekend to write the original computer code for what would eventually become an internet superbrand the auction site eBay. The site was launched on Labor Day, Monday, September 4, 1995, as "Auction Web"; it was hosted on a site Omidyar had created for information on the ebola virus. The word 'eBay' was made up on the fly by Omidyar when he was told that his first choice for his web site, 'echobay,' had already been registered. Not wanting to make a second trip to Sacramento, he came up with 'eBay.' The frequently repeated story that eBay was founded to help Omidyar's fiancée trade Pez candy dispensers was fabricated by a public relations manager in 1997 to interest the media. This was revealed in Adam Cohen's 2002 book and confirmed by eBay. The service was free at first, but started charging in order to cover internet service provider costs. Jeffrey Skoll joined the company in 1996. In March 1998, Meg Whitman was brought in as President and CEO and continued to run the company until January 2008 when she announced her retirement. In September 1998, eBay launched a successful public offering, making both Omidyar and Skoll billionaires. As of July 2008, Omidyar's 178 million eBay shares were worth around $4.45 billion. Omidyar is also an investor of Montage Resort & Spa in Laguna Beach, California. In 2010, Omidyar launched an online news service in Honolulu called Civil Beat that covers civic affairs in Hawaii. Omidyar and his wife Pam are well-known philanthropists who founded Omidyar Network in 2004 in order to expand their efforts beyond non-profits to include for-profits and public policy.


BS Computer Science, Tufts University, 1988

Occupation and Career:

Morad Omidyar is an entrepreneur and philanthropist, who is the founder and chairman of the eBay auction site. His career includes:

  • Claris (subsidiary of Apple Computer), consumer software engineer
  • eShop/Ink Development Corp., Co-Founder (acquired by Microsoft)
  • eBay, Founder and Chairman
  • Co-Founder, CEO and Publisher, CivilBeat.com

Awards /Honors:

  • Carnegie Medal of Philanthropy (2011)
  • Honorary Degree from Tufts University, Doctor of Public Service, honors causa (2011)
  • Forbes, World's 7 Most Powerful Philanthropists (2011)
  • The 25 Best Givers, Barron’s (2009-2010)
  • Elected to the American Academy of Arts & Sciences (2009)
  • The Greatest Entrepreneurs of All Time, BusinessWeek (2007)
  • Innovation Awards, The Economist (2006)
  • 15 People Who Make America Great, The Giving Back Awards, Newsweek (2006)
  • The Top Givers, Business Week (2003-2008)
  • Most Generous Donors, Chronicle of Philanthropy (2002 – 2007; 2009-2010)
  • The Slate 60, Slate (2002 – 2007; 2009-2010)
  • Runner up, Man of the Year, Time Magazine (2000)
  • Golden Plate, American Academy of Achievement (2000)
  • Global Leaders of Tomorrow, World Economic Forum (1999)
  • Visionary Award, Software Development Forum (1999)
  • U.S. National Entrepreneur of the Year Award, Ernst & Young (1999)

Quotes and Memoirs:

  • We have technology, finally, that for the first time in human history allows people to really maintain rich connections with much larger numbers of people.
  • eBay's business is based on enabling someone to do business with another person, and to do that, they first have to develop some measure of trust, either in the other person or the system.
  • I was just pursuing what I enjoyed doing. I mean, I was pursuing my passion.
  • I've got a passion for solving a problem that I think I can solve in a new way. And that maybe it helps that nobody has done it before as well.
  • What makes eBay successful.. the real value and the real power at eBay is the community. It's the buyers and sellers coming together and forming a marketplace.
  • When I started eBay, it was a hobby, an experiment to see if people could use the Internet to be empowered through access to an efficient market. I actually wasn't thinking about it in terms of a social impact. It was really about helping people connect around a sphere of interest so they could do business.