This is a tough issue for the world’s richest company. Apple has about $100-billion in cash lying around in various countries.
What should Apple do with all that money? TechCentral asked that and it’s the wrong question. This is the right question.
What would you do with all of Apple’s $100-billion in cash?
Imagine yourself as Tim Cook, Apple’s newly crowned CEO. You’re running the company. What you say, gets done. What would you do with the money?
Alright, let’s say I’m Tim Cook. What would I do? Let’s start there, and then you can argue with me.
First, let’s do a dividend. Apple could give back, say, $40-billion to shareholders. They would love that. Not only are they rich already from feasting on Apple’s glory days as a darling stock, a lump sum of cash just makes people feel good.
Uh oh. Wait a minute. Microsoft did that. Would Apple be copying Microsoft if they issued a humongous dividend? How did that work out for Microsoft?
So, give the money back to shareholders? Nah, that’s a stupid idea. Microsoft did that back in 2003 and the company hasn’t done diddly squat since then. Apple should not copy Microsoft.
Shopping. That’s it. Every New York girl loves to shop, so Apple, under my deft guidance, should go shopping. They could buy Yahoo! Or, Adobe. Or, Google. Or, AT&T. Or, Hollywood. Or, the entire cable television industry.
Those last two acquisitions would make the upcoming Apple television a sure fire hit. The only way you could watch network television or movies at home would be to buy an Apple television. You know, the one with the Retina display.
Here’s my two cents for Apple. Don’t change your methodology just because money mongers demand yet another slice of your hard-earned profits. It’s Apple’s money. Shareholders own shares, and that’s crazy-assed valuable already (with a share price rapidly catching up to the falling price of an ounce of gold).
What Apple does is make gadgets that people are willing to stand in line to buy. Who would be crazy enough to dink around with that formula?
What would you do with Apple’s $100-billion in cash?