Apple’s been buying a company every 20 days for the last four months

“If you’ve ever complained of Apple not putting its cash to good use, you’re gonna love this,” Steve Symington writes for The Motley Fool. “No, I’m not talking about an unmerited increase to Apple’s already-historic share repurchase authorization. And no, Apple hasn’t changed its hefty dividend, which resulted in $2.8 billion in payouts last quarter alone.”

“I’m talking about innovation by way of strategic acquisition. You know, like when Apple’s prophetically purchased fingerprint sensor specialist Authentec last year,” Symington writes. “Specifically, during Apple’s quarterly earnings conference call this week, CEO Tim Cook told investors Apple completed 15 strategic acquisitions in all of fiscal 2013.”

“For those of you keeping track, however, you might recall when Cook was asked why Apple ‘doesn’t buy things with its money’ at AllThingsD‘s D11 conference, he countered to note that, while Apple had previously maintained a respectable pace of acquiring a new company every 60-75 days — or ‘maybe six a year’ — it had already purchased nine new companies at that point in the fiscal year,” Symington writes. “Curious, I did a little back-of-the-napkin math at the time, which put Apple’s pace then at around one acquisition every 27 days. But Cook conveniently made those comments almost exactly four months and six acquisitions prior to the Sept. 28 conclusion of Apple’s fiscal year, which puts its latest acquisition pace at roughly one every 20 days.”

Read more in the full article here.

Related article:
Apple reveals 15 acquisitions made in 2013, seven of which are mysteries – October 29, 2013


    1. I know. I always chuckle at those who insist that Apple should buy some giant company – Google (back in the day), Yahoo, Blackberry, etc. – when it makes much more sense to buy a much smaller company for their talent and limited patent portfolio than a large behemoth that would turn into an integration nightmare.

  1. It seems to me that Apple’s acquisitions from the past have done rather well-chip companies , SD memory , fingerprint ID even if we are waiting for LiquidMetal etc .
    I trust that they are being and will be equally strategic .

  2. I’m waiting for some blockbuster acquisition. Apple buying $100 million companies is hardly going to get investors excited or help boost Apple’s share price. It always seems as though Apple’s acquisitions don’t get any bang for the buck. It’s like those companies are acquired and then just disappear without nary a ripple. I realize Apple operates in secret but I’m just saying…

    Stop with that LiquidMetal stuff. A SIM ejector tool is hardly a major breakthrough. That one tool appears to be the only product Apple has ever produced from the investment in LiquidMetal.

    1. Buying companies is not Christmas shopping.
      Everything one Apple purchases has to add to what they are trying to do. Big acquisitions almost always lose value because they are too big to swallow and have too many things to get rid off.

      1. Apple has never made large scale acquisitions, the last thing it needs is to become a conglomerate simply because spend big sounds like it has the wow factor. Running another big company pretty much separately would need skills Apple does not have and would destroy its focus not to mention get bad publicity as it being desperation. If Microsoft can’t do much with big buys I really can’t see a company with no experience of so doing making a success of it. People who say otherwise are just shallow and unimaginative but looking for a quick jab of excite,meant for the sake of it in the main sadly, or simply looking for a quick buck for themselves.

    2. What, they should act like Microsoft when buying companies?
      – Make a big announcement in the press
      – Spend way more than they should
      – Buy some company that is on it’s way down or turns into a has-been.

      What you seem to forget is that Apple is secretive, they don’t care what investors think and could give a rat’s ass about share price.

      Also, when has Apple disclosed big tech info from acquisitions? Never. (yea, lets tip our hand to our competitors) Dumb.

      They just keep doing what they have been doing for years.
      – Selling the BEST MP3 player.
      – Selling the BEST smartphone.
      – Selling the BEST tablet.
      – Selling what many users believe, the BEST computer and OS.

      So, if you’re unhappy about that, then nothing will make you happy.

    3. “It’s like those companies are acquired and then just disappear without nary a ripple.”

      Most acquisitions I guess we never hear much about, but two that I can think of right off the bat overshadow all the rest and get all the bang for the buck that Apple has spent. PASemi and Authentec. Without them we’d have no A7 or fingerprint sensor.

      But I am also waiting for that big acquisition, like a couple of media companies. Or Apple starting a bank.

  3. While I agree with your line of thinking (Apple getting into the home automation business – I think it’s a forgone conclusion that they eventually will), I think that Nest has remained too narrowly focused and slow moving.

    1. I disagree. Nest brought one very successful product to market, refined it with a second version, and then introduced a second complimentary but separate product. What’s slow about that?

      Don’t forget Apple basically just sold computers for about 25 years until the iPod was introduced. Sure Appke sold other various items, but nothing that truly became a second leg of the stool so to speak.

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