TODAY | April 29, 2014
>>> has given you a front row seat to the biggest stories in business. in honor of its anniversary, the network has combined cnbc first 25, rebels, icons and leaders, a definitive list of people who have influenced and changed the world of business. carl quintanilla , happy anniversary .
>> thanks so much, matt.
>> how did you do this? you're looking for the people who sparked the biggest changes and created the most disruption in the world of business. did a bunch of you guys get together in a room and hash this out?
>> it's business geeks gone wild, is what i like to say. it's not a popularity contest. it's not a vote. it's our editorial team, an advise panel trying to put in order of importance, the business leaders trying to strip out the world leaders and politicians who brought innovation, who made american business what it is.
>> there's some big egos on the list. were people vying to be included on this?
>> people were vying to be on it. people were upset when they didn't make cuts. it's been an extraordinary political process.
>> let's play a little business icon word association . i'll give you a name, tell me what comes to your mind. number one on the list, no surprise, steve jobs .
>> steve jobs sold us products that we didn't know we wanted yet, right? the ipad, the ipod, the mac, the ie iphone. he turned the movie business by turning pixar from a graphics company into an animation powerhouse. he is the consummate salesman.
>> he was going to be number one no matter what. number two is bill gates .
>> bill gates , arguably, without gates, you never have a pc revolution to begin with, right? you never break down ibm. you never bring the computer into the home, into the business. that was a big fight, which one was going to be number one or number two.
>> i'm skipping here. jeff besos comes in at number five.
>> he didn't invent online shopping , but he made it a routine practice in our daily lives. he's a retailer for the digital era. started with books. now he's exploring space and taking on netflix. he's an amazing businessman.
>> let's not ignore the ladies. oprah winfrey makes the list as does martha stewart .
>> oprah is the most influential american, the richest black american . the two of them, just by sheer force of personality, created a brand, created new categories of media and retailing in ways that we hadn't seen before until they came along.
>> by the way, it's not just a list. you do profiles of all these people that will air, and one to think about for people as they sip their morning cup of coffee, howard schultz makes the list.
>> my favorite is howard schultz story. he's working for this small coffee roaster in seattle. he goes to italy and he realizes that espresso bars are the social hub of these towns. he says, we've got to do that at scale. has to go out, do it on his own. he buys the starbucks name and now we know we need it every single morning.
>> it's a fascinating list. we'll put the entire one up on our website. but it's the first 25. cnbc . congratulations on the anniversary. it's good to see you.
>> you, too.
>> and you can catch the one-hour special cnbc first 25, rebels, icons and leaders tonight, 7:00 eastern on cnbc .