25th Anniversary Timeline 

Celebrating 25 Years of Innovation 

1986-1990 The Synthesis Company

Synopsys Founders

Synopsys founders from left to right: Bill Krieger,
Aart de Geus, Dave Gregory and Rick Rudell.

Founded in 1986 by Bill Krieger, Aart de Geus, Dave Gregory and Rick Rudell, Synopsys (then called Optimal Solutions, Inc.) began its legacy with seven employees in a small office located in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina. In its first 5 years, Synopsys grew its annual revenue to $22 million, began establishing its presence globally by adding offices in Europe, and grew its workforce to nearly 150 people. In addition to expanding its product portfolio organically, the company also added System VHDL after acquiring it from Zycad in 1990.

Synthesis CompanySynthesis Company


Products, Solutions & Technology

DAC1988

Synopsys attends the Design Automation Conference (DAC) in Anaheim
for the first time in 1988.

Synopsys introduced its first logic synthesis and simulation products, including Design Compiler®, Logic Compiler, HDL Compiler™ and VSS.



Mergers & Acquisitions
  • 1990
    • Zycad’s System VHDL tool


Customers & Partners
Synopsys established relationships with more than 30 customers including AMD, Fujitsu, HP, IBM, LG, National Semiconductor, Philips, Samsung, Sony, Texas Instruments, Toshiba and UMC.


Standards & Interoperability
Synopsys supported key industry standards such as EDIF, Verilog and VHDL™.


Community Relations & University Programs

  • 1986
    • Synopsys began providing its tools to universities.
  • 1989
    • Synopsys employees organized the first charitable event in support of the Loma Prieta earthquake victims in California.
  • 1990
    • Synopsys established its Corporate Giving Committee.

Employees from 1988
Employees from 1988 gather outside the Synopsys building.


User Community

SNUGThe Synopsys Users Group (SNUG®) program was established in 1990 to provide users of Synopsys design tools and technology with an open forum in which they could exchange ideas, discuss problems and explore solutions.