I know that comparisons with your previous boss can be harsh. But that’s the inference that’s being drawn with the performance of Tim Cook as CEO of Apple. The matter is up for discussion after the Apple CEO presentation at the Apple AGM (Annual General Meeting) this week.
His former boss, the late Steve Jobs, is the boss in question. It’s probably not kind to draw attention to the different presenting styles of Steve Jobs and his successor, Tim Cook. They are different. But Mr. Cook has all the skills needed for a solid product presentation.
But Apple investors appeared to get little or nothing from his presentation at the meeting. Because the share price continued to fall as investors rid themselves of stock. The share price has now fallen by some 37% since September 19 last year.
Worried investors are concerned that the Apple business is sitting on $137.1 billion in cash and investments; cash and investments that could be returned to shareholders as a dividend, for example or could be used to buy back shares…or could finance the next wave of product innovation.
The CEO’s presentation at Apple HQ, 1 Infinite Loop in Cupertino, California didn’t shed much light on future products. And that’s the main concern here. Following the Apple CEO presentation, people asked questions about the future direction and strategy of the business. Quite right.
But, that’s not a good signal from his investor audience. There’s more than a suggestion that his presentation muddled a message or a set of messages. Net result? Confusion over his future plans and strategy for the business.
The CEO confirmed that his company had plenty of:
in the Apple pipeline. But, beyond his overriding focus on long term product innovation, there was no real detail or implicit strategy in this presentation.
However, he managed to secure 99.1% of the shareholder votes for re-election as CEO so he’s clearly got more than a few fans. And let’s not forget that he was the chosen successor of Steve Jobs.
His presentation might prove a blip as a raft of exciting product innovations hit the Apple store in the months ahead. Hold tight.
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