Apple’s immediate future safe under Cook, say analysts

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Analysts say new CEO Tim Cook’s experience and close relationship with Steve Jobs will help ensure continuity, but in the long term a new driving force may have to be found

The resignation of Steve Jobs is unlikely to hamper Apple’s continued success in the short to medium term, according to analysts.

Gartner analyst Carolina Milanesi said that Apple under new CEO Tim Cook (pictured) would continue to follow the path lain down by Jobs for the immediate future.

She said : “I think that the collaboration with Tim Cook has been going on for so many years, and more importantly Tim has stepped into the CEO position all the times Steve has been out for leaves of absence, that that partnership is strong enough for Tim to know where the company needs to go.”

Ovum analyst Nick Dillon agrees, but said that Cook might bring a different leadership style to Apple.

He said: “They are quite different personalities and have different skill sets.

“Cook is very much operations, responsible for retail strategy and supply chain, making sure the supply is satisfied, but it was very much Jobs role to create demand in the first place. He was a very talismanic leader in that respect.

“That said, I don’t think it will have any impact in the short to medium term.”

Milanesi pointed out that there were still many people at Apple capable of producing innovation and drive.

She said: “The team is still the same team, the designers and from a marketing perspective Phil Schiller. The core of the company is still there.”

Longer term, both analysts said that someone at Apple would have to step up to provide the sort of direction Jobs has delivered since rejoining the company in 1996.

Dillon said: “Who will be their deciding force on which products are chosen and which are not, and the overall strategy?

“There are a few potentials. Jonathan Ives has been quite core to the vision in that respect, but then he will be reporting in to Tim Cook.

“There are still questions about whether there will be any conflicts arising, or whether someone will step into that role and become the natural successor.”

Despite questions about the firm’s long-term future, Milanesi believes that market reaction to the news of Jobs’ departure has been “more emotional than rational”.

She said: “From a consumer perpective does it change anything? Absolutely not.

“You don’t buy a Steve Jobs product you buy an Apple product.”

 

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