Co-founder and CEO, Garmin
Why he matters: Kao has built a $1.8 billion business heeding the old axiom of location, location, and location. The world's largest manufacturer of GPS devices, his company is spearheading a revolution in location-based computing.
The company, which does its own design, manufacturing, inventory, distribution, and customer service, sold about 5.6 million units last year, grabbing more than 50 percent of the U.S. market. When the day comes that every phone, computer, and iPod has a built-in GPS device, chances are the technology will be Garmin's.