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Founders at Work: Stories of Startups' Early Days by Jessica Livingston

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CHAPTER 10Mike Lazaridis Cofounder, Research In Motion

imageMike Lazaridis founded Research In Motion (RIM) with his friend Doug Fregin in 1984 while still an undergraduate at the University of Waterloo. One of their first projects was a local area network that ran industrial displays. Near the end of Lazaridis's senior year, they landed a $600,000 contract to build a similar network for General Motors. A few weeks shy of his graduation, Lazaridis left school to focus full-time on the company.

RIM was one of the first companies to appreciate the importance of wireless networks. In the early 1990s, when email was still largely unknown in corporate America, ...

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