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A former Microsoft sales director says Adobe is everywhere

And the former Microsoft sales director is none other that Bruce Chizen who believes Adobe’s if-you-build-it-they-will-come business model will continue to pay off. "Our mission hasn’t changed over the past 23 years," said Chizen. "The world around us has. That’s why is as successful as it is today."

An action movie is more than a Hollywood hit. It’s an Adobe hit. A magazine fashion spread? An Adobe magazine layout. "We are everywhere you look," he said, referring to the San Jose company’s design and digital-video special-effects software, used universally in creative fields. "Whether it’s a logo on a bottle label, an effect in a movie, a TV commercial, an image on a Web site, a layout in a newspaper or a picture in a magazine, - there is a high probability that the content was touched by Adobe."

Adobe’s move to acquire rival Macromedia is designed to give it Microsoft-like dominance in software to produce, edit and display digital documents and video on a range of devices, from personal computers to cell phones.

PDF sits on more computers than Windows does, the company likes to say. That’s because it runs on all operating systems, not just Windows. Adobe estimates that between 500 million and a billion computers worldwide use PDF. By some estimates, PDF is the most popular format on the web after HTML.

Read more on Adobe's success and the challenges faced by the company - Adobe vies for leading role in digital era.