With President Trump, Apple CEO Cook plays the role of diplomat — so far, it seems to be paying off

Apple CEO Tim Cook laughs with U.S. President Donald Trump as the news media leave the room after the two men spoke while participating in an American Workforce Policy Advisory Board meeting in the White House State Dining Room in Washington, U.S., March 6, 2019. (photo: Reuters/Leah Millis)
Apple CEO Tim Cook laughs with U.S. President Donald Trump as the news media leave the room after the two men spoke while participating in an American Workforce Policy Advisory Board meeting in the White House State Dining Room in Washington, U.S., March 6, 2019. (photo: Reuters/Leah Millis)

Apple’s CEO Tim Cook has met with President Trump on at least five occasions since his election. So far, those meetings appear to be paying dividends.

Annie Gaus writes for TheStreet:

Tim Cook has long maintained a presence on behalf of Apple in China, given the country’s importance to the tech giant as a supplier and assembler, as well as a significant consumer market. Now he’s increasingly been applying those diplomatic skills on the U.S. side of that relationship as well.

With President Trump now engaged in a long-term tit-for-tat with Chinese leader Xi Jinping, trade relations have proven to be a fluid situation that often seems to change at the drop of a hat, and Cook has proven effective at communicating what Apple has to gain and lose from various policies.

Since Trump’s election in November 2016, Cook has met with Trump on at least five occasions, including two dinners and one private meeting at the White House. Last Friday, the pair met for dinner at Trump’s golf club in Bedminster, New Jersey to discuss tariffs; Cook has also dined with First Daughter Ivanka Trump and her husband, Jared Kushner, at least once.

MacDailyNews Take: So far, so good, at least as far as AAPL is concerned (albeit being typically undervalued, which is largely a separate issue from U.S.-China trade tensions; it’s more of a failure of analysts and investors to understand the company, treating it as a hardware maker, rather than as an ecosystem provider with incredibly strong margins and exceptional customer satisfaction and resultant loyalty).

10 Comments

    1. A smarter man would have diversified Apple’s manufacturing base years ago.

      As we all know, the wise homeowner who avoids torching his house is given zero credit. The guy who roars in and pours water on the embers after the dumb guy mismanaging his house is given all the accolades.

      Right now, Timmy is sitting on a pile of kindling, negotiating with an arsonist. Let’s see which of these idiots is the smartest.

  1. Only Tim Cook could do this. Jobs would never have had the patience for this kind of stuff. Not for five minutes. He’d have called Trump a bozo and stormed out. After all, he was probably even better at throwing tantrums than Trump.

    1. I think even Cook might consider a walkout if the President had been in his presence when he accused the 79% of American Jews who voted for Democrats in 2018 of being “disloyal.” That, on top of suggesting that brown-skinned native-born US citizens who oppose his policies should go back where their ancestors came from (in some cases centuries before his ancestors arrived). How about trying to steal Greenland from its native population, or using his influence to persuade a foreign government to prevent two duly elected Members of Congress from exercising their Article One responsibility to see how US aid is being spent in a country whose Chief Executive is under indictment for corruption? Tim Cook is patient, and he grew up in a part of Alabama with some pretty screwy ideas, but I suspect that even his tolerance has limits.

  2. We need to see much more of this type of cooperation between opposites in politics, yet the same goals in commerce. Washington politicians please PAY ATTENTION …

    1. As I have said, Tim Cook grew up in the only US County that refused to fly flags at half mast after the Pulse Nightclub shooting because the victims were gay. He has a lifetime of experience in dealing with the sort of people who would cancel a state visit to Denmark at the invitation of their Queen because the Prime Minister would not add the sale of Greenland to the agenda.

      Greenland is not Danish. It is a semi-autonomous territory under the Danish Crown, but ruled by the native Greenlandic population. The Government of Denmark can not negotiate its sale to the US without local consent, which Mr. Trump has not attempted to obtain. I guess the next step will be to annex it by force, like Crimea, and then treat the Greenlanders like he does Puerto Ricans.

      This is serious 25th Amendment country. Tim Cook may be uniquely qualified to deal with this level of bizarre behavior.

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