In a surprising development in Cupertino, Apple’s co-founder and Chief Executive Officer Steve Jobs has resigned from his post, with the board naming Apple Chief Operating Officer Tim Cook as his replacement. Jobs, in a letter, has asked the board if he could still continue working with Apple as its chairman of the board.
“Steve’s extraordinary vision and leadership saved Apple and guided it to its position as the world’s most innovative and valuable technology company,” said Chairman of Genentech Art Levinson, on behalf of Apple’s members of the board. “Steve has made countless contributions to Apple’s success, and he has attracted and inspired Apple’s immensely creative employees and world class executive team. In his new role as Chairman of the Board, Steve will continue to serve Apple with his unique insights, creativity and inspiration.”
Levinson added that the board has complete confidence in Cook and he is the right person to be Jobs’ successor. “Tim’s 13 years of service to Apple have been marked by outstanding performance, and he has demonstrated remarkable talent and sound judgment in everything he does.”
As Apple’s COO, Tim Cook was responsible for all the company’s sales and operations worldwide, including the management of its supply chain, service and support, and sales activities in all countries. He also headed the Macintosh division and played an important role in the development of strategic supplier and reseller relationships.
While Cook lacks the charisma and vision of Jobs, he has endeared himself to the staff of Apple through unfailing loyalty and sheer accumulation of work hours. But does he have the ability to lead one of the biggest companies in the world? Former Microsoft CFO John G. Connors, who sits on Nike’s board with Cook, said that there is only one Steve Jobs, but Apple will be wildly successful under Cook’s leadership.
Will Apple be the same without Steve Jobs?