Will Apple's Bob Mansfield Leave for Dell? (AAPL, DELL)
Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) created some controversy last weekend after eliminating Bob Mansfield from its executive leadership page.
After rumors of his departure began to circulate, Apple confirmed that Mansfield had stepped down, but will remain at the company.
"Bob will no longer be on Apple's executive team, but he will continue to work on special projects," Katie Cotton, an Apple spokeswoman, told Bloomberg.
Mansfield spent many years at Apple and most recently served as its Senior VP of Technologies. He came out of retirement to rejoin Apple in the wake of the firm's executive shakeup last fall, which moved Scott Forstall from his position as Senior VP of iOS to merely an advisor to CEO Tim Cook.
According to AllThingsD, Mansfield had originally planned to maintain his new role with Apple for another two years. His early departure (or position change, as Apple claims) is one of the more curious developments to come out of Apple.
One rumor suggested that activist investor Carl Icahn may be planning to appoint Mansfield to a new role at Dell (NASDAQ: DELL). Investors and analysts alike say that will not be the case.
"I can't imagine in a million years why he would want to go to a company like Dell," Brett Golden, President and co-founder of The Chart Lab (a provider of quantitative advice solutions for retail and institutional investors), told Benzinga. "I can only imagine a guy like that would want to create something of his own."
Golden said that the business "is a death spiral" that is "shrinking."
"Why would you want to deal with those headaches?" he questioned. "It's an uphill battle. Why not create something new and exciting that has some tailwinds?"
That said, Golden acknowledged that Mansfield's success with Apple has never been confirmed.
"Everything you hear is hearsay, so you don't really know how instrumental he was," said Golden.
Trip Chowdhry, the Managing Director of Equity Research at Global Equities Research, praised Mansfield and said that Apple is "struggling to maintain its employees."
This is a problem that Chowdhry has been complaining about for more than a month.
Nonetheless, he does not think there is any chance that Mansfield will end up working for Dell.
"Mansfield is a very smart guy," said Chowdhry. "He knows where to go, and Dell is definitely not the place. Dell is a sinking ship and is a company that is living in the past."
Louis Bedigian is the Senior Tech Analyst and Features Writer of Benzinga. You can reach him at 248-636-1322 or louis(at)benzingapro(dot)com. Follow him @LouisBedigianBZ
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