Aug 30, 2011
Apple’s succession story has been in the news lately – or rather a story made necessary by Steve Job’s health situation. In this article on CNET : Apply supply chain sees smooth sailing ahead, the new head of Apple – Tim Cook, is reputedly a supply chain pro. In one sense, that’s a great thing but then I take a step back and ask myself : Is that what Apple really is?
I don’t think of Apple as a supply chain company with great products but a company with great products that has honed its supply chain quite well.
There is one quote from a Jeffries Analyst that speaks to the supply chain management voodoo at Apple:
"Even with the unfortunate events in Japan around the time of the iPad 2 release, Tim Cook was able to double or sometimes triple source component suppliers. To date, no competitor has been able to gain meaningful share in the tablet market; and, in our view, Cook’s leadership during the introduction was critical to this."
Perhaps, we will see Tim Cook elevate the next avatar of Steve Jobs from within Apple’s ranks that puts the key competitive advantage of Apple front and center. That would be “Giving people what they didn’t even know that they needed”.
Not easy but necessary.