Apple’s next big thing: A new CEO?

“Did Apple’s (AAPL) board of directors make too quick of a decision when they effectively went all-in Tim Cook?” Rocco Pendola asks yet again for TheStreet. “Here we are, with AAPL waffling in the low-to-mid $400s… If the next six months or a year go by and things do not improve, we’ll look back on this and… it will not seem funny. What do I mean by ‘improve?'”

The one-note Pendola writes, “First, sentiment must improve. That’s what drives AAPL. Tim Cook presides over uncertainty that — fair or not, wrong or right — looms because he is not Steve Jobs. That’s why the stock is down…. It’s one thing to run a supply chain (or operate retail like Ron Johnson did in the shadow of Steve Jobs). It’s entirely another to be in the same class as Jobs… as a high-profile CEO.”

MacDailyNews Take: Why does Rocco hate Tim Cook so much that it’s all the insipid bastage can manage to write about? Stay tuned for the answer below…

Pendola writes, “And, at some point, Apple’s board will lose the confidence they must be starting to question. How could any board not given the circumstances? How can they look at Tim Cook and not second-guess their decision to make the symbolic move to grant the guy one of the biggest stock awards in the history of executive compensation? I’m sure he has a pretty sweet separation package as well.”

MacDailyNews Take: Ah, finally, after umpteen columns that can be summarized “Tim Cook is not Steve Jobs, so Apple is doomed,” there’s the answer:

Jealousy.

It’s not at all becoming, Rocco.

And, hey, Rocco, in the time it took you to read this far, Tim Cook made more than you’ll make in your entire lifetime. Have a nice day!

“Sure, Jobs wanted Cook to get the gig. But he didn’t make the decision to prematurely anoint Cook the guy for the next decade,” Mr. Monotone scribbles. “Symbolic or not, that was a bad move. And don’t be surprised if you start hearing talk about Apple reversing course much sooner than expected.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Tedious Rocco had better hope his life’s most fervent wish does not come true or he’ll have nothing to write about.

That said, Cook does have a problem – hopefully a temporary one – in that Apple’s shareholders’ patience is wearing thin. $705 to $430 in 6 months after reporting all-time record earnings will do that to you. No matter how good he is, if the stock price doesn’t rebound, he’ll be skating on thin ice sooner than later.

As we wrote on March 5th:

Tim Cook is the perfect man for this very difficult job. We can think of nobody better. There are only three issues we have with Cook so far:

Marketing: Steve Jobs held a three-hour meeting every Wednesday afternoon with his top agency, marketing and communications people to approve each new commercial, print ad, web ad, and billboard. Does Tim Cook? If he does, does he have anything close to Jobs’ sensibilities in this area? Judging from Apple’s marketing since Steve left the building, he does not. Therefore, Cook needs to find a marketing guru to take Steve’s place, conduct these Wednesday meetings, and hold his marketing peoples’ feet to the fire until he/she is extremely satisfied.

Presentations: Nowhere is it more obvious that Tim Cook is not Steve Jobs than on stage. Jony Ive needs to be convinced to take his passion live onto the stage. We saw him do it with extraordinary aplomb at Steve Jobs’ memorial. We see him do it in each new major product’s marketing video. Cook needs to cede the stage to the guy at Apple who is closest to having Steve’s vision, passion and presentation skills. Cook doesn’t strike us as having an overblown ego. He should step back. If Jony is reticent, he needs to be convinced. There is no rule that the CEO has to be the one presenting at Apple events. It is a total waste for Cook to keep trying so obviously hard to do something that is not his forte when Jony exists and is sitting right there backstage. We don’t hang on Cook’s every word (we just wonder why he’s overemphasizing some of them so much). We hung on Steve’s every word. We hang on Jony’s every word. It’s that simple. At the very least, have Tim MC the events, but make sure Jony is the one out there doing the reveals and gushing about the products. If Jony really loves Apple, and we’re sure he does, then he should demand the job. Step back, Tim, and focus on doing what you’re good at.

Operations: With his newfound extra time having Jony doing the events like he should be, Cook will have time to mentor and oversee his operations guy, Jeff Williams, and make sure nothing like the total fsckup that happened last quarter happens ever again. Apple is too big and too rich to screw up things like iMac availability for Christmas shopping season. This isn’t 1996. Steve Jobs would have gone on a spree with an axe. Tim Cook, operations genius, is ultimately responsible for Apple blowing some 800,000 iMac sales in fiscal Q113 (holiday quarter). (Hopefully, he blew them into this quarter.) If Apple had those iMacs ready like they should have, not two months late, then they would have handily beaten the street in all respects and we wouldn’t be having this conversation today.

Fix these three things (the marketing issue being the most difficult as Steve was a genius) and, like we said, Tim Cook is the perfect man for the job.

Related articles:
Obviously, Apple’s autumn iMac launch was badly botched – March 19, 2013
Tim Cook’s doing fine, some Apple shareholders know nothing, but there are 3 things Cook needs to do – March 5, 2013
The curious case of Tim Cook, operations genius, and the missing iMacs – February 4, 2013

62 Comments

    1. Funny how the much more obvious and “worthy” CEO who deserves to be to be forcefully drop kicked out the nearest exit Steve Ballmer doesn’t get this much attention. MS investors and the MS Board still seem to be soundly somnambulatory and they have much more cause to be marching on Redmond with pitch forks and torches ready for a good tar and feathering (including both Ballmer and his little buddy Bill Gates). I guess we shouldn’t be too hard on the best thing outside Apple that helps Apple tremendously.

    2. Well put MacRaven, I agree.

      And MDN, Please, you are beginning to sound like Rocco and the other “I need hits this week” posters.

      I posted this to the article site and to Rocco but it almost sounds like it should mention MDN too (at least at times).
      ========
      Rocco, what are you eating these days??? Oh wait, its still two weeks to Apples “make more money than ever and is a wall street fail” report, so you are posting for hits.

      “First, sentiment must improve. …….. because he is not Steve Jobs. That’s why the stock is down.” — Er that is called speculating. Most of us small buyers are investors. We see Apple making more and more money (140 Billion in cash no debt) and yet we wonder as the stock price falls.

      My guess is that people like you and Cramer and many blogger “ex-perts” would like to see the following to allow Apple stock to climb.
      1 – give ever increasing dividends (use that 140 billion) untill its all gone.
      2 – borrow 10-20 Billion and use that for dividends too.
      3 – Promise the world in tech innovation…. in only a years time….. just you wait.
      4 – instead of great quality products, start turning out cheap crap in different colors, make HUGE screens,, mini screens… anything but quality.
      4 – cut back on Genius help and quality in the stores and on line. It will save money.

      After all this, Apple stock will be sky high. Then the company will fold cause they cannot pay their bills. But you and Cramer and others will finally be happy cause Apple will follow the same fate as Dell. Yes, the stock price will be high on speculation, not on good investing principles. And after Apple closes, you all can print another “I told you so” piece.

      I don’t know whats sadder, your approach to the world or the markets driving down of Apples stock price. Cause Apple is not doing anything to drive it down. (remember stock price was to show the value and strength of a company, not how much you can speculate and make money on it in the next week or so.)

      Just a thought.

    3. Rocco Pendola’s background is sports talk radio. I used to listen to him on The Ticket in Dallas years ago. He was a tool on the radio and is in no way, shape, or form qualified to talk about business markets, technology, software, etc, etc. He is loud and obnoxious and a hit whore. There are far more educated and qualified people who post on this board who know FAR more about APPL than Rocco could ever hope to be.

      Thestreet.com is a bunch of loud, obnoxious junkyard dogs that spew noise and ZERO intelligence or actual reporting.

  1. What if Steve Jobs were still alive? If Apple stock tanked to $430 from a high of $705 in six months would Rocco’s scuttlebutt be about “time for Steve to go and be replaced by someone else, like a Tim Cook?”

    1. How soon we forget the pre Tim Cook relentless: “Steve Jobs is dying”, “No succession plan”, “Apple is dead” bashing…

      Apple has destroyed all parasitic corporate molds, so this is the best everyone can do – Apple will continue and it’s lifelong users will still be solidly behind it just because of how it creates new models that can’t be pegged.

    1. Nope, Mr. silverhawk, the number of people across the entire spectrum of AAPL shareholders calling for Tim’s retirement party is growing every day. You and the MDN lemmings in these parts can hang on to your blind support for him but YOUR numbers are falling. Fast.

      1. Here’s the question I have for all you Tim Cook haters. Who would you put in his place? Jony Ive is the heart and soul of Apple right now but he doesn’t want to be CEO. Tim Cook knows it and I’m not sure anyone out there besides Tim Cook would let Jony be Jony.

  2. There is another option: teach Tim Cook how to communicate. He might be great in all other parts of the CEO job, but his communication skills are poor. Or at least what he shows to us, his customers.

    1. He’ll get better, but it takes time. And he might never be great at it.

      On the other hand he has senior people around him that are very, very good at it, and are Apple through and through.

    2. @I love Apple (so do I) Good suggestion but fatally flawed because it’s way too late to fix Tim Cook’s communication skills – if it ever was. Every time he speaks or appears in public, the price of AAPL falls some more. Wall Street has completely dismissed him as credible and has no faith in the future of the company under his leadership. Only his replacement with a dynamic, visionary, and smart CEO from the Steve Jobs mold will restore that faith and rescue Apple Inc.

      1. BS, don’t confuse TC’s skills with the ‘coincidental’ actions of market manipulators. For 20+ years wallstreet bashed at Apple for everything and anything. They lived, and investors who understood the company stayed long and prospered.

        For 8-9 years Apple was a WS darling, and they praised the hell out of it, and manipulated the price artificially up, and up, and up.

        The pendulum has now swung the other direction, and its Apple’s turn to be raped my WS and its manipulators for the sake of nothing other the personal gain of idiots like swEinhorn.

        Steve J didn’t introduce revolutionary products every two weeks, he didn’t give a dead rats ass about the stock manipulation market. Steve knew that Apple isn’t APPL, and the big cash reserve was the guarantee that Apple could act and flourish independently of APPL. Thats the single most important thing TC can take away from Steve J

      2. Or, perhaps Wall Street would like the turmoil that would occur if Apple changes CEOs, since the more turmoil, the easier it is to buy/sell at wildly fluctuating share prices. In other words, they want Apple to do something NOT to help Apple, but to make the market react.

        Whenever you see a Wall Street analyst or one of their media shill announce that someone should do something, assume it is to help them cheat by rigging the odds in that fixed-game casino called the stock market.

  3. If Tim Cook is willing to make a brilliant move, buy Tesla and make Elon Musk the Apple CEO, while Cook does what he does best, run manufacturing and Asian expansion.

    Apple again would have a brilliant and charismatic CEO, and we’ll have really cool Apple cars.

  4. Here is my dream team for Apple:

    CEO – Tim Cook (yes .. he can stay)
    CFO – Warren Buffett
    Chairman of the Board – Wozzie

    + a more suitable title higher up in the chain for Ivy (second only to Timmy)

    Net result: AAPL 700$ before 2014

  5. Pendola can fsck off, as well as every other simpering dipshit that thinks Apple’s stock price is important to the success of Apple. FYI dipshits: Apple doesn’t have over 100 billion in the bank because they made the shills for the Wall St propaganda machine all warm in their pants. They make billions because they sell products people want to buy at a profit. Companies obsessed with pleasing the criminals on Wall St are broken companies. Microsoft’s stock price has been flat for a decade as they still make billions. Amazon makes no money and Wall St loves them. Pendola and his ilk are con artists and blatant manipulators and need to ignored b

    1. This post is typical of something that a person who was brought up in a difficult environment without education would say. I feel sorry for the circumstances that would lead you to be unable to articulate a meaningful statement without having to resort to vulgarity. Unfortunately, your point is lost to me and perhaps many others because you can’t manage to restrain yourself or control your thoughts.

          1. His Shadow’s post was not that bad he tastefully didn’t even write out a vulgar word in full (some do here) choosing a real Unix command. If the silly word “dipshit” offends you, you have bigger problems than you claim he does. I’ve seen far worse vulgar posts here where I might agree with your finger wagging, but not in this case. I highly doubt there are many young children finding this forum a daily read, if ever.

            1. Why would you want to shield young children from such language? How about your mother? Would you speak that way to a clergyman? Would you use that kind of language to your significant other? Perhaps you could extend those courtesies to us all.

    2. @ HS.
      Totally valid and well thought out points. Investing is betting on the company to do well over the long term. Speculating is getting stock, pushing for big gains and dividends then getting out. –Wo cares about the company.

      Apple investors would like to see the stock price go up, but its better to see the company stay strong. Remember a company called — DELL — . They were on top for all the wrong reasons… market share but losing money. Yep that must be good,,,,, until the company crashes and has no where to go but SECAGTMBTTSH.

      Just a thought here.

      en

  6. So why doesn’t this Hack ask the same questions of Steve BALLMER, CEO of Microsoft, who is very much alive, also has a generous incentives package, has run Microsoft for a decade, has had numerous and very expensive product failures, and the stock price has remained steady at under $20 the whole time: and their Board has continued to rubber stamp his continued employment? Hmmm?

  7. People have forgotten September of 2008. AAPL (and I) lost HALF of the stock value and Steve Jobs was alive. They all miss it because it looks like a speed bump on the stock chart.

    The difference between 2008 and now is Apple does not need to take the pounding. In 2008, Apple could not defend it self or the investors. That is the issue. Still being “PATIENT” but Timmy is screwing things up. He needs to do all 3 of the above things and leave his personal and political side show to himself and for AFTER HE LEAVES APPLE!

    1. i agree. i was there too and saw my holdings being cut in half for now other reason than some recession fears and illiogical “concerns§ by the media and the analysts (apple was growing earnings and revenues nicely in that time, yet a bit slower than before). steve jobs didn’t do anything about it and i guess that is the reason cook also holds still. yet i think some of the slump this time is self inflicted. apple doesn’t seem to be able to control its message at the moment and not using the huge cash pile to buy back more shares at these levels is a daily slap in the face of loyal longtime stockholders.

      1. @GM where are you on this one?

        @ralph, why is there such a thing as a “loyal longtime stockholder”? As stated above and you know this if you are a long time stockholder, Apple doesn’t care about AAPL. As GM has said here over and over again, own stocks to make money, not to express loyalty to a company. Sell their stock when you need to or think it’s hit a relative high, and buy when you have some money that you don’t think will make you as much money elsewhere within whatever timeframe you can afford. That run up to ~$700 wasn’t really do to anything Apple was doing, and the crash wasn’t really because of anything Apple did or didn’t do. You can be loyal to Apple and still buy & sell AAPL as you need to. You can sell it all (Steve sold all of his holdings except one share) and buy back in when doing so makes sense for your situation — all the while you know in your gut the company is doing fine and will continue to do fine.

  8. When did ‘jealousy’ leave the realm of personal relationships and become ‘envy’ as in for possessions and prestige? Just wondering because it happened on my watch.

  9. In terms of profit and success in the market Apple is second to none. They made a mistake in the last quarter with the iMac production issues but that’s about it.
    All the griping has been about the stock price and in reality Apple’s performance isn’t the issue here. The stock is down because the market sees no huge growth opportunity since the iPad is now an established product.

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