Steve Jobs resigns as CEO, becomes Chairman; Cook to take over

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UPDATED: Apple’s Steve Jobs has resigned as CEO of Apple and will be replaced by Chief Operating Officer, Tim Cook, who is currently handling his role during his absence from the company since January.

Jobs will still retain a role in Apple, as the Board of Directors have announced him to become the chairman of the company.

“I have always said if there ever came a day when I could no longer meet my duties and expectations as Apple’s CEO, I would be the first to let you know. Unfortunately, that day has come,” Jobs wrote in a public letter.

“I hereby resign as CEO of Apple. I would like to serve, if the Board sees fit, as Chairman of the Board, director and Apple employee.”

Jobs founded Apple with Steve Wozniak in 1977 with the Apple I. In 1981, the company goes public in the stockmarket, and during Steve’s tenure managed to grow Macintosh before being ousted in 1985 due to competition from IBM and Microsoft. He then starts his own company NextStep and acquires Pixar Animation Studios. By 1996, Apple was nearly bankrupt and he returned, launching a year later the iMac.

Unfortunately, that day has come [for me to resign]Steve Jobs, former CEO of Apple

Now, under Steve Job’s latest tenure, he has managed to shift the company from being nearly bankrupt and a joke against a PC dominated world to becoming the most admired brand in a consuming world. This is thanks to its now diverse product lines – the Macs on computers, the iPod in the digital music player, the iPhone in the smartphone race and the iPad for tablets. The iPhone single-handedly revitalised the smartphone to be more consumer, rather than business.

His decision, however, wasn’t a complete shock. Jobs has been suffering from a medical illness, a hormonal imbalance disorder, that has forced him to take a leave of absence from his role three times during the past decade. His deteriorating health has been recognisable since his cancer in 2004.

According to MSNBC/AP, his cancer may have likely re-emerged. This is according to Dr. Timothy Donahue from the ULCA Center for Pancreatic Disease. Donahue also says that survivors of the neuroendocrine pancreatic typically have a median survival rate of two years.

There has always been a hush-hush from Cupertino over who would succeed him, but Cook has been seen as the likely candidate after he managed to improve the stock price despite Jobs’ absence.

It is unknown if Jobs will be the face of Apple when they release products.

Full press release below:

CUPERTINO, California—August 24, 2011—Apple’s Board of Directors today announced that Steve Jobs has resigned as Chief Executive Officer, and the Board has named Tim Cook, previously Apple’s Chief Operating Officer, as the company’s new CEO. Jobs has been elected Chairman of the Board and Cook will join the Board, effective immediately.

“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 Art Levinson, Chairman of Genentech, on behalf of Apple’s 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.”

“The Board has complete confidence that Tim is the right person to be our next CEO,” added Levinson. “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.”

Jobs submitted his resignation to the Board today and strongly recommended that the Board implement its succession plan and name Tim Cook as CEO.

As COO, Cook was previously responsible for all of the company’s worldwide sales and operations, including end-to-end management of Apple’s supply chain, sales activities, and service and support in all markets and countries. He also headed Apple’s Macintosh division and played a key role in the continued development of strategic reseller and supplier relationships, ensuring flexibility in response to an increasingly demanding marketplace.

Apple designs Macs, the best personal computers in the world, along with OS X, iLife, iWork and professional software. Apple leads the digital music revolution with its iPods and iTunes online store. Apple has reinvented the mobile phone with its revolutionary iPhone and App Store, and has recently introduced iPad 2 which is defining the future of mobile media and computing devices.

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