Market Overview

Tim Cook Is Ready


You may have heard mutters this morning or read a few small news pieces about the fact that Steve Jobs has stepped aside as Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) CEO (spot the sarcasm). The completely unsurprising news is that Tim Cook will be talking over the position, with Jobs taking a Chairman role.

Cook has been Jobs' right hand man for nearly 15 years. In that time, he has served as acting CEO or effective head of the company during Jobs' three medical leaves of absences. Jobs obviously trusts the man completely.

According to MG Siegler of TechCrunch, that is not surprising. “In each instance, not only has Apple survived, they've thrived. That's fairly remarkable when you think about it. Each time, pundits have more or less said it was the end of Apple, and each time Apple ended up ahead of where they were when Jobs left. It was trial by fire, and Cook passed with flying colors.”

So there you have it. Cook is proven to be more than qualified to take over from Jobs, because he has had a few successful trials. Prior to joining Apple, Cook was with IBM and Compaq. He has thrived alongside Jobs though, with the former CEO saying that, “Not everyone knows it, but three months after I came back to Apple, my chief operating guy quit. I couldn't find anyone internally or elsewhere that knew as much as he did, or as I did. So I did that job for nine months before I found someone I saw eye-to-eye with, and that was Tim Cook. And he has been here ever since.”

Between them, Jobs and Cook have practically redefined the electronics industry. Cook's views on inventory, for example, proved to be particularly successful. Cook believes that inventory is “fundamentally evil”, as it declines by 1 or 2 percent at the best of times. Faster than that when times are hard, as they are now.

Of course, when a man with a public profile like Jobs' steps aside, the news will be filled with stories like, “will Apple survive?” In truth, they have a man stepping into the role who Jobs himself has gotten ready for the job. Apple stocks might take a minor hit as a result of a knee-jerk reaction to today's news, but the likelihood is that they will recover quickly.


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