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Steve Jobs Makes Rare Appearance During Quarterly Earnings Call

Apple CEO Steve Jobs made a rare appearance during Apple’s 4th quarter earnings results conference call. Feeling the timing was right to address some questions that have been raised, Jobs highlighted two core milestones. First being Apple beating (outselling) RIM, and second, measured by revenue, Apple has become the world’s third largest mobile phone supplier, behind Nokia and Samsung.

jobsAfter only 15 months in the market, the iPhone is clearly becoming Apple’s (AAPL) blockbuster recession proofing product. “Both of these things are amazing feats… but part of this was the result of expanding into over 50 countries,” Jobs explained. “Not bad for only being the market for only 15 months.” Regarding outselling RIM, Apple sold 6.9 million units compared to RIM’s 6.1 million.

“Apple just reported one of the best quarters in its history, with a spectacular performance by the iPhone—we sold more phones than RIM,” said Steve Jobs, Apple’s CEO. “We don’t yet know how this economic downturn will affect Apple. But we’re armed with the strongest product line in our history, the most talented employees and the best customers in our industry. And $25 billion of cash safely in the bank with zero debt.”

“We’re very pleased to have grown revenue 35 percent and to have generated $9.1 billion in cash in fiscal 2008,” said Peter Oppenheimer, Apple’s CFO. “Looking ahead, visibility is low and forecasting is challenging, and as a result we are going to be prudent in predicting the December quarter. We are providing a wide range for our guidance, targeting revenue of $9.0 to $10.0 billion and earnings per diluted share between $1.06 and $1.35.”

Jobs turned to the economy, “the broader market conditions.” — “We are not economists,” Jobs explained. “We have the best customers in the world,” he continues. Explaining the whole widget belief Apple holds, Jobs believes that while customers may postpone purchases due to tough times, they are unlikely to move platforms. “We have the best notebooks in history,” Jobs proclaimed, showing the company’s premium positioning in the marketplace.

Apple CEO Steve Jobs is not known to make appearances on these conference calls. His presence on the call clearly shows Apple’s direct approach to making its shareholders feel comfortable. For a company as in the spotlight as Apple, with a stock as volatile as Apple’s, a confident appearance by the CEO is a great move. While delivering his thoughts in regards to the current economic situation, Jobs doesn’t believe that the downturn is creating a market for cheaper netbook computers. Thus, Apple chooses to be in certain segments of the market and not others. Reiterating what he previously mentioned, Jobs explained that he would be surprised to see consumers choose cheaper products in large numbers.

Focusing on the netbook subject, Apple explained that not a lot of netbooks are being sold (comparatively), in this market. However Jobs mentioned that he definitely has some “interesting ideas” if this market happens to evolve. Continuing to push the iPhone as a mobile computing platform, Apple explains the iPhone is what they are offering in this “cheaper PC” category.

In summing up, Jobs confidently addressed Apple’s $25 billion in the bank. “We’re very comfortable with our cash position… it’s not burning a hole in our pocket.” Apple has the foresight to invest through the tough times ahead, and “We’ll be fine and stronger than ever when the storm clears out in the future,” Jobs concluded.

Comments [6]

6 Comments to “Steve Jobs Makes Rare Appearance During Quarterly Earnings Call”

GOLDENyoyo @ October 21st, 2008 at 2:55 pm
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That’s pretty comforting that he would show up during these times. It shows that they care. Very rare move, but such a great one.

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Aviv @ October 21st, 2008 at 2:57 pm
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Couldn’t agree more. Apple’s usually good at listening to its customer base, and the market’s landscape has changed dramatically as of late. His appearance on the call shows a confidence that all shareholders can find reassuring.

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tsiona @ October 21st, 2008 at 2:56 pm
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i agree

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TimH. @ October 21st, 2008 at 2:58 pm
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I can’t even wait to see what his “amazing ideas” are for the netbook market if it ever pans out. I’m still sticking strong to the cheaper computer baby. GIVE ME THAT $700 NETBOOK BABY !!!

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jojo22 @ October 21st, 2008 at 3:00 pm
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“In summing up, Jobs confidently addressed Apple’s $25 billion in the bank. “We’re very comfortable with our cash position… it’s not burning a hole in our pocket.” Apple has the foresight to invest through the tough times ahead, and “We’ll be fine and stronger than ever when the storm clears out in the future,” Jobs concluded.”

Jobs kept talking about investments and they might INVEST during the next downturn. BUT.. WTF ?!?!?!? Can we please know what your plans are ?!?!?! WE ARE SHAREHOLDERS ?!?!?!?!?!?!?!

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Hendrix13@yahoo.com @ October 21st, 2008 at 5:55 pm
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Did anyone else just kind of jump up a bit when he started talking ? Kinda came out of nowhere.

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