Apple Stock Plummets in the Wake of Steve Jobs' Resignation
Apple’s long-time CEO Steve Jobs has stepped down from his post, with the company’s chief operating officer Tim Cook set to take the driver’s seat.
Immediately following the end-of-the-trading day announcement on August 24, Apple's shares dived in after-hours trading by nearly US$20, or 5%. But the knee-jerk reaction aside, Ovum chief telecoms analyst Jan Dawson does not expect any immediate operational impact on Apple, which recently surpassed Exxon at one point as the world's most valuable company.
Jobs resigned after going on indefinite leave in January to focus on his battle with cancer. Apple announced that Jobs has been elected chairman of its board, with Cook made a board member, effective immediately.
In a letter to employees, Jobs wrote: “I have always said if there ever came a day when I could no longer meet my expectations as Apple’s CEO, I would be the first to let you know. Unfortunately, that day has come.”
Jobs also said that he looked toward to “watching and contributing” to Apple’s success “in a new role”.
Apple board member Art Levinson said Jobs would continue to serve Apple with his “unique insights, creativity and inspiration” as board chairman. Levinson added the board had full confidence that Cook was the right choice to fill Job’s shoes.
Gartner research director Michael Gartenberg said that while Job’s resignation marked the end of an era for Apple, it was important to remember there was more to Apple than any one person, including Steve Jobs. Gartenberg added Jobs would continue to leave his mark on both the company and products even as he transferred leadership over to Cook.
Ovum's Dawson pointed out that Cook has been effectively running the company since Jobs took medical leave. "Jobs will now serve as Chairman and will therefore continue to have a role with the company, at least in the short term," he said. "the broad direction and strategy for the company and its major products for the short to medium term will already be in place, and will not be affected by this change."