Aldus Corporation logo

Aldus Corporation was a software company that had developed PageMaker and marketed FreeHand.


Aldus was founded by Paul Brainerd, Jeremy Jaech, Mark Sundstrom, Mike Templeman, and Dave Walter in Seattle, Washington in February 1984.[1] In the fall of 1987, Aldus licensed a graphical program from Altsys Corporation and released it as Aldus FreeHand,[2] with Altsys retaining development rights.[3]

Mergers and acquisitionsEdit

Silicon Beach Software shell logo

Logo of Silicon Beach Software at the time of its acquisition by Aldus.

In February 1990, Aldus announced its intention to acquire Silicon Beach Software,[4] which was completed for US$25.5 million in stock.[5] Aldus appointed Bruce Chizen as the VP and general manager of the studio in San Diego.[6]

Aldus itself was absorbed by Adobe Systems in a merger that was completed on August 31, 1994.[7][8] Altsys sued to regain marketing rights to FreeHand, citing a non-compete clause because of Adobe's development of Adobe Illustrator.[3] Other products from the Aldus line were rebranded to Adobe in May 1995.[9] By December 2000, Bruce Chizen had become the CEO of Adobe.[10]



  1. Aldus Corp, Crunchbase. Accessed 2019-11-21.
  2. Aldus Licenses Altsys' Mac Graphics Program, InfoWorld p.65. 1987-09-21.
  3. 3.0 3.1 Aldus to Add Products, Enhance Pagemaker, InfoWorld p.125. 1987-10-26.
  4. Briefs, The New York Times. 1990-02-08.
  5. Aldus Corporation History, Funding Universe. Accessed 2019-11-22.
  6. Business Leaders: Bruce R. Chizen, MarketScreener. Accessed 2020-04-20.
  7. Aldus and Adobe Lay Claim to Digital Publishing by Laurie Flynn, The New York Times. 1994-08-24.
  8. Aldus and Adobe Systems Finalize Merger, Computer History Museum. 1994-08-31.
  9. Adobe Systems Continues Product Line Rebranding, Adobe Systems. 1995-05-08. Archived 1996-10-22.
  10. Bruce Chizen Biography, Encyclopedia of World Biography. Accessed 2020-04-21.

External linksEdit


  • Expanding the Empire, Inside the Publishing Revolution: The Adobe Story by Pamela Pfiffner (PDF, 2003-03)
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