Eric Yuan 101: Revolutionizing Video Communication
Zatrun Published at April 29, 2024

Eric Yuan, a renowned Chinese-American billionaire businessman and engineer, has left an indelible mark on the world of technology with his creation of Zoom Video Communications. Born on February 20, 1970, in Tai’an, Shandong Province, China, Yuan’s journey to success is a testament to his determination and innovative spirit. His story, from humble beginnings to the helm of a technology giant, is an inspiring one. has explored the remarkable life and career of Eric Yuan, uncovering the path that led to the global phenomenon that is Zoom.

Eric Yuan: Early Life and Inspiration

Eric Yuan’s parents, both geological engineers, instilled in him a strong work ethic and a passion for problem-solving. In his early years in Tai’an, Yuan’s resourcefulness became evident as he collected construction scraps to recycle copper, demonstrating his entrepreneurial spirit even as a child.

As a first-year university student in 1987, Eric Yuan embarked on a journey that would change his life and the world of communication technology. Inspired by his long train rides to visit his girlfriend, he saw the need for a more convenient way to connect over long distances. This led to the inception of the idea to develop videotelephony software.

Yuan’s academic journey played a crucial role in shaping his career. He earned a bachelor’s degree in applied mathematics with a minor in computer application from Shandong University of Science and Technology. His hunger for knowledge drove him to pursue a master’s degree in geological engineering from China University of Mining and Technology in Beijing. To further enhance his skills, he completed an executive program at Stanford University in 2006.

The Entrepreneurial Path

Eric Yuan’s career path took him from Beijing to Japan for a four-month training program, and it was in Japan that he found inspiration in Bill Gates, who spoke there in 1995. Yuan was captivated by the world of technology, and he decided to make his mark in Silicon Valley.

In 1997, Eric Yuan ventured to Silicon Valley to be a part of the tech boom. His journey was not without challenges; Yuan faced the daunting task of obtaining a U.S. visa despite his limited English proficiency. His determination prevailed, and he was granted the visa on his ninth attempt.

Upon arriving in the United States, Yuan joined WebEx, a burgeoning web conferencing startup. He was among the first 20 employees of the company. Cisco Systems later acquired WebEx in 2007, and Yuan was appointed as the vice president of engineering.

Eric Yuan’s innovation and drive were evident when, in 2011, he pitched the concept of a smartphone-friendly video conferencing system to Cisco management. The idea, however, faced rejection, leading Yuan to make a pivotal decision: to establish his own company, Zoom Video Communications. In 2019, Zoom became a public company through an initial public offering, marking a significant milestone for Eric Yuan. His journey from an entrepreneur with a vision to a billionaire was realized.

Personal and Family Life

Beyond his professional success, Eric Yuan’s personal life reflects his commitment to his family and the values he holds dear. He married his girlfriend, Sherry, while he was pursuing his master’s degree at China University of Mining and Technology in Beijing. The couple has three children.

Currently, Eric Yuan and his family reside in Santa Clara, California, embracing the vibrant tech culture of Silicon Valley. In 2007, Yuan became a naturalized United States citizen, solidifying his connection to the country that has played a significant role in his life and career. It is worth noting that Yuan chose the middle name “S” in honor of Subrah Iyar, the co-founder of WebEx and an individual who played a pivotal role in his journey.

Eric Yuan’s story is one of innovation, determination, and the pursuit of a dream. His creation, Zoom, has become an integral part of our modern world, connecting people across the globe. has delved into the life of this visionary entrepreneur, shedding light on the remarkable path that led to the creation of Zoom Video Communications and the revolutionization of video communication.

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