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Should Tim Cook Be Ousted?

A series of recent incidents of bad press may have left investors wondering why CEO Tim Cook isn't doing a better job managing Apple's (NASDAQ: AAPL  ) image. The Wall Street Journal recently reported on lagging iPhones sales threatening a Verizon sales agreement, while Financial Times recounted engineering delays with the rumored iWatch, and there are continuing reports regarding poor labor conditions at Apple's suppliers.

In the following interview with the Fool's Alison Southwick, contributor Doug Ehrman discusses how bad news has affected the company and why you may want a new CEO if you're an Apple shareholder.

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Read/Post Comments (11) | Recommend This Article (2)

Comments from our Foolish Readers

Help us keep this a respectfully Foolish area! This is a place for our readers to discuss, debate, and learn more about the Foolish investing topic you read about above. Help us keep it clean and safe. If you believe a comment is abusive or otherwise violates our Fool's Rules, please report it via the Report this Comment Report this Comment icon found on every comment.

  • Report this Comment On July 31, 2013, at 5:25 PM, GaryDMN wrote:

    He has been running Apple for a decade and it has been Apple's best decade. Steve Jobs knew he was dying over ten years ago, because Pancreatic cancer is terminal. Jobs was very sick and had a liver transplant to extend his life years ago, but that was the only equivalent of a band aid on a terminal wound. Tim Cook was selected by Jobs for a reason and Cook has lived up to the task.

  • Report this Comment On July 31, 2013, at 5:31 PM, IraLA wrote:

    Sure, let's get Meg Whitman or Donald Duck or Michael Dell.

    Don't make this sort of outlandish suggestion unless you have names to propose.

    Maybe George W or Woz

  • Report this Comment On July 31, 2013, at 6:04 PM, Elowen2583 wrote:

    Ehrman didn't even answer the question and presumes Tim Cook should be ousted. The quest was who should fill in Tim Cook's shoe when he is ousted. No answer, just explanations. Typical complainer mentality. Just complains and no answers or solutions.

    Maybe even a shorter.

  • Report this Comment On July 31, 2013, at 6:11 PM, whyaduck1128 wrote:

    Is Carly Fiorina (sorry, I mean The Great Carly Fiorina Herself Live And In Person) available? I mean, Herself was such a smash success as a tech company CEO before, I'm sure she could do a much better job than Steve Jobs' picked successor.

    Seriously, though, while I'm not that enthralled with Tim Cook, I'm not in favor of ousting him before even one full generation of products have come to market. It's too early to call him a failure--or a success.

  • Report this Comment On July 31, 2013, at 6:25 PM, jda24601 wrote:

    I'm starting to realize that Motley Fool is an appropriate name for this organization.

  • Report this Comment On July 31, 2013, at 6:33 PM, DanManners wrote:

    One commenter made a good point and that was Cook helped run the company while Jobs was alive. To a certain extent this is correct. But he had Jobs making the final decisions and I am sure, coming up with ideas.

    Second, there is no guarantee that Jobs might have done as well as Cook. Jobs could have said no small tablets and they would have been worse off. You really don't know.

    But what I do know is Tim Cook is not the right person for this job. I heard how he is a master of the production channel. But all I see are constant problems. Also, Jobs was a legend. If he went to China with a problem, the Chinese might have be more agreeable as Jobs was a rock star.

    Also, having heard Cook speak, I get the impression that his likes and dislikes are off kilter with the rest of humanity. To put it bluntly, where the heck is a bigger screen phone. Every manufacturer has one. Apple no? It is a joke. Maybe next year is the phrase I would not expect from a company that is supposed to be leading the way.

    Everyday I hear of another metric that Android or Samsung or Google take the lead in over Apple. Everyday I hear of a lawsuit Apple is losing. Everyday I hear how the Chinese call Cook and tell him to get his Apology iPad out. When I wake up in the morning I actually check to see if there are any negative Apple articles. I never thing are there any positive ones as there are rarely any. Anyway, positive news often comes out and has no effect of the stock price. Only recently did the earnings help lift the stock. But we have to see will it sell off as before only to be a brief moment of relief.

    Apple will trade down to 240 as per David Trainer and Cook will still be at the helm. After giving tens of millions in gifts to board members like Al Gore, he won't get voted off anytime soon.

  • Report this Comment On July 31, 2013, at 7:50 PM, ScottAtlanta wrote:

    DanM -- I feel for you buddy. All the other Apple posts I've read are so obnoxious....I think that's why I've been bashing Apple....just to make them squirm. How bout a little humility? ...."Oh I love love love my Apple....but it's not perfect." No, instead we hear "Apple is the perfect ecosystem...if you have any worth, it because Apple gave it to you or you stole from Apple....all was designed for and under Apple...Apple is Salvation." It's like some nightmare parent... or cult. No company is perfect and we all struggle with a stock at one point or another....

    But now for more bashing and fear mongering.

    Perhaps Jobs's last words were "destroy it." and Cook knew exactly what he he has set about to insidiously destroy that which was Jobs' was his to create and his to destroy. He was vindictive and capricious after all... as a megalomaniac.

  • Report this Comment On July 31, 2013, at 11:27 PM, spakklal wrote:

    one more stupid suggestion from a motley fool contributor. Apple's growth rate for the last 5 years is 72.8% and no other large cap has pile up around 150 billion dollar in cash during Tim Cook's leadership. Apple is the most profitable tech company in the world with just 2 or 3 products and has revenue close to 170 billion dollars.

    You quite a few dumb fools talking crap about the company.

  • Report this Comment On August 01, 2013, at 12:14 AM, singaporenick wrote:

    Cook has presided over record profits,large-scale dividends and share buy-backs,increasing i_phone market share,a boom in the iTunes infrastructure,and we have new products coming which will make the future great or not,only time will tell.

    Ehrman has a long history on Motley Fool of writing articles that plumb the depths of foolery,and this ranks as amongst the worst of his many bad ideas.

    He was short on Apple so he is probably upset at the share price rise the last couple of weeks.

  • Report this Comment On August 01, 2013, at 9:01 PM, adam222 wrote:

    Mr Cook was a master of production channel when he was working with Steve Jobs, which position was a far cry from being a CEO of Aaple..

    After iphone 5 was launched last September, many hedge funds and institutional investors sold off their positions in Aaple holdings as they can not see the future of Aaple.There were so much negative sentiments about the company.

    We hope that Mr. Cook would realized that his management strategy is hurting Aaple badly and he needs to protect the good image of Aaple, increase the promotion and sales of Aaple products.Most importantly, he needed to launch new product categories. As Mark Hibben had written that if the current leadership prove itself unworthy, a new leadership can and will be found .

    We surely hope that Mr. Cook will lead Aaple back to its right path, winning the favor of the market place and the analysts, before any changes needed to take place.

  • Report this Comment On August 02, 2013, at 12:44 AM, tkell31 wrote:

    Maybe it's me, but is it really possible he could be doing a worse job? He says the same things every conference call. Great things have been coming for two years, but so far it's only been refreshed products and a redesign. Supply problems with the iPhone5, horrendous planning with a gap in products release, and last time I checked a deal with China Mobile was coming any day for the last two years.

    Credit for the buyback and dividend? I would argue the buyback is really helping insiders sell more than rewarding investors and the dividend was inevitable given the cash on hand. They blasted through 30% of the buyback in one quarter and I suspect the recent run up is more related to the upcoming dividend than excitement over the company (price action was the same as last quarter).

    I have no idea what they are planning, but unless something new a pretty impressive comes out in the first half of 2014 I would have to conclude he's a blatant liar and really needs to go. If they wanted to can him sooner I couldnt argue with it. Hasnt shown any vision or foresight to proactively offer different screen sizes and price points.

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