“Apple CEO Tim Cook is staring down the barrel of his latest career-defining moment in the wake of a shocking financial warning to investors,” Brian Sozzi reports for Yahoo Finance. “‘Tim Cook’s legacy will be determined by what happens in 2019,’ veteran tech analyst Dan Ives of Wedbush Securities tells Yahoo Finance. Ives believes that Cook has to prove a lot to investors this year and do it quickly in order to set Apple up for longer term success. ‘There is a lot of pressure on Cook to make sure Apple gets to its next chapter.'”

“Up until this point, Cook’s legacy could be viewed as a CEO that didn’t mess up what the innovative founder created,” Sozzi reports. “At the same time, Cook has expanded Apple’s reach into the lives of people globally — and its social influence.”

Apple CEO Tim Cook

Apple CEO Tim Cook

“But a $7 billion revenue warning now has Cook on his back heels with the media, investors and even Chinese consumers amid rising trade tensions. In effect, Cook’s resumé suddenly has a host of new asterisks,” Sozzi reports. “Most sources Yahoo Finance talked with think Cook will be forced to aggressively ramp up stock buybacks and M&A. Doing so, says sources, would signal to investors that Cook is prepared to use Apple’s massive cash pile ($250 billion-plus) to fundamentally change the investment narrative.”

“Scrutiny rightfully will be high. And it should be: Cook and his management team failed to properly guide investors to slowing global demand for its most important product, the iPhone. Supply constraints for new Macs and Apple Watches are also a black eye for Cook considering his operations background,” Sozzi reports. “‘This is one of the darkest days in Apple’s history,’ Ives says.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: The pressure Cook is now under was palpable as he stammered his way though that CNBC interview after Apple was forced to slash its revenue outlook for the first time in almost two decades.

Unfocused, hubristic mismanagement deserves comeuppance. Let’s hope the humiliation being heaped upon them today and in the days to come refocuses the minds in Apple’s C-suite as if Steve Jobs himself were once again standing before them demanding answers, excellence, and timely performance. — MacDailyNews, January 3, 2019

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