When Apple Plunged Into Severe Losses, Steve Jobs Used These 3 Simple Strategies To Save Cupertino From Bankruptcy


Apple Inc. co-founder Steve Jobs is credited with launching several revolutionary products including the iPhone and iPod, among others. Perhaps his biggest win, however, is saving Apple from bankruptcy and revitalizing it for decades to come.

Jobs has often been credited as being an iconic leader, but he dipped into his learnings to turn around Apple's fortunes.

Apple's fortunes had started plummeting in the 90s – between 1995 and 1997, the company's stock declined by 58% while Nasdaq was witnessing strong growth.

Months before, in 1996, Apple reported $816 million in losses and by 1997, its cash reserves fell dangerously. That's when Jobs stepped in and kickstarted the company's revival.

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But how did he do it? Here's what he had to say three months after pulling Apple back from the brink, in a CNBC interview.

"Somebody taught me, a long time ago, a very valuable lesson, which is, if you do the right things on the top line, the bottom line will follow."

Jobs’ idea of these "right things" revolved around three things back then – strategy, people, and culture.

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If you have these three things, Jobs says, "you'll do the right products, you'll do the right marketing, you'll do the right things logistically, and in manufacturing in distribution."

"If you do all those things right, the bottom line will follow."

Apple's Resurgence

While Jobs' return did not solve all of Apple's issues on day one, his new strategy set in motion a series of changes at the company that not only saved the company but also set it on the path of becoming one of the most valuable ones in the world.

Jobs has several iconic product launches to his credit – from changing the music industry with the iPod and iTunes to the iPhone which changed the face of the smartphone industry forever, to the MacBook lineup and the iPad.

After his return, Jobs convinced Apple's board to implement his changes. He convinced rival Microsoft Corp. to invest $150 million in the company, bringing it back from the brink and also streamlined the company's product portfolio to align with his vision.

The rest, as they say, is history. Apple is now the world's second-largest company by market capitalization, which currently stands at $2.9 trillion.

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