Founder of Graphisoft SE and
Aquincum Institute of Technology
Gábor Bojár (65) was one of the very few entrepreneurs of Central-Eastern Europe to succeed in global business already in the years of state-socialism. With a degree in physics and several years spent heading the group of mathematicians at the Geophysics Institute of the largest Hungarian university (Eötvös Lórand), Mr Bojár founded his own firm in 1982. Graphisoft (www.graphisoft.com) a software development company focusing on 3D architectural design, or BIM (Building Information Modeling) grew rapidly and in a decade became one of the top software vendors of the sector internationally. Claiming the most prestigious awards of the trade, Graphisoft’s leading product, ArchiCAD® is distributed in over eighty countries and is used by hundreds of thousands of architects, real-estate developers and maintainers. Graphisoft had been introduced to the Frankfurt (1998) and the Budapest (2000) stock exchange and was purchased by Nemetscheck Gmbh (Germany) in 2007 with the aim to establish Europe’s predominant architectural design software company. Mr Bojár remains Chairman of Graphisoft’s board of directors.
Still in 1996, Graphisoft initiated an independent real-estate development business to re-cultivate a run down industrial site on the bank of the river Danube. The former gas factory plant was turned into a unique, state-of-the art science park accommodating the research units of corporations at the forefront of contemporary innovation in information and biotechnology (including Microsoft, SAP, Servier and others.) “Graphisoft Park” has become Budapest’s prime revitalization project of its kind and the recipient of several awards and recognitions.
Mr. Bojár has been member of the board of directors of several high tech companies, including Richter Gedeon Pharmaceutics (1995-2008) and served as a curator of Soros Foundation Hungary (1998-2005.) Since 2012 he is a member of the Governing Board of the European Institute of Innovation and Technology.
Mr. Bojár was distinguished by numerous national and international awards for scientific and business excellence that include the John von Neumann prize (1995), the Lóránd Eötvös prize (1996), the Széchenyi prize (1997), the Dennis Gabor prize (1998) and the prize for the Development of the Hungarian Economy (2005.) The President of the Hungarian Republic awarded him the Order of Merit in 2002. The Wall Street Journal named Mr Bojár as one of the ten most successful entrepreneurs in Central Europe in 1998. In 2006, he became Ernst and Young’s Entrepreneur of the Year in Hungary and was nominated for the World Entrepreneur of the Year Award.
Throughout the years of leading Graphisoft from a tiny Hungarian family-business to a globally successful public corporation, Mr Bojár forcefully pursued his commitment to promoting excellence, research and innovation with a genuine entrepreneurial spirit. Mr Bojár has been a dedicated advocate of these values in the context of education and talent-management – the pillars of his ambitious project in social entrepreneurship. Already in 1996, Mr Bojár established a foundation promoting the historical achievements of Hungary’s secondary school education in the natural sciences (“Foundation Professor Rátz” was named after the acclaimed school teacher of several Nobel Laureate Hungarian scientists.)
In 2007 Mr Bojár committed a substantial portion of the proceeds from the sale of Graphisoft software company to establish a highly competitive school of information technology for an international student body pursuing under- and postgraduate degrees. Aquincum Institute of Technology (http://ait-budapest.com) is meant to be an example of social entrepreneurship demonstrating the viability of a self-sustaining investment in higher education. The entrepreneurial approach is to define the ambition and operational model of the School, which is thus expected to become customer-centered and flexible. The School is set to excel in a well-defined market niche of global IT education. Today AIT-Budapest is proud to host students for a semester abroad from top universities of the United States, including, Harvard, Yale, MIT, Princeton and many others.
An invited speaker of several prestigious events (including the Davos World Economic Forum), Mr Bojár is adjunct faculty member of Central European University Business School, offers guest lectures internationally and has published several articles of general interest as well as a book exploring the “Graphisoft story” with an analytic perspective.
Gábor Bojár has two children and lives in Budapest with his clinician wife.