Most Innovative Companies


This famed multinational software company might be best known for its flagship product, Photoshop, but its portfolio includes dozens of different products spread across its Creative, Document, and Marketing Cloud platforms. What unites these products is Adobe's goal: to make software that helps anyone with an idea or story to bring their vision to life.

John Warnock and Charles Geschke, two Xerox PARC greats, launched Adobe in 1982 to revolutionize the way computers dealt with fonts. The company eventually segued into releasing creative applications with the advent of Photoshop in 1989, and in the decades that have followed, the company's portfolio has grown to include other well-known creativity and productivity apps like Lightroom, InDesign, Illustrator, Acrobat, and more.

In 2016, under CEO Shantanu Narayen, Adobe finished its five-year transition of its product portfolio from local software to software-as-a-service—which means its applications can take advantage of cloud-based intelligence to offer up-to-date recommendations and solutions to users. Adobe brags that it has achieved a tech industry first, beating the peak of its desktop software sales with cloud subscriptions. Meanwhile, in 2017, the company pushed into exciting new categories, like AI and virtual reality. It’s also figuring out how to incorporate machine learning into existing software, like a new Photoshop feature called “select subject” that uses Adobe Sensei to separate the subject of a picture from the rest of the backdrop.

In June 2018, Adobe unveiled Project Aero, which lets designers create AR content using popular tools they already know, such as Adobe Photoshop CC and Dimension CC. For the first time, they’ll be able to lay out and manipulate designs in physical spaces, making AR creation more fluid and intuitive. 

public or private: Public
staff: 14,000+
headquarters: San Jose, California
Competition: Apple, Microsoft
Adobe On The Web