On June 25, 1981, Microsoft reorganized, from a partnership to a privately-held corporation, changing its name to Microsoft Inc., and becoming an incorporated business in the state of Washington in the process.

Founded by Bill Gates and Paul Allen in 1975, following their creation of the BASIC programming language for the Altair 8800 micro-computer, the two friends worked day and night to build their business and have their platform become the primary operating system for all personal computers. Gates and Allen originally set up the Microsoft head office in Albuquerque, New Mexico, only to relocate to their home state of Washington in the late 1970s.

Following the relocation and reorganization, Microsoft began to take-off. The company released its first retail version of Microsoft Windows in 1985, and went public with an IPO one year later. The IPO was obviously a great success, and has since made billionaires out of the company's founders, and millionaires out of thousands of Microsoft's employees.

Today, Microsoft is the dominant force in the computer software and programming industry and a global icon in the technological sector. Founders Bill Gates and Paul Allen are two of the richest men in the world, and are credited by many to be the creators of the personal computer. (To learn more, read Venturing Into Early-Stage Growth Stocks.)

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