Tim Cook has acknowledged that Apple has bought back $14 billion of its own shares over the past two weeks — reacting to an 8 percent decline in shares following the recent financial quarter results.
In an interview with the Wall Street Journal, Cook admitted that he was “surprised” by Wall Street’s reaction to Apple’s last quarter, in which the company broke records by selling 77 million iOS devices over the holiday season.
Apple’s recent share repurchase is the largest of its kind for a company of Apple’s size over a similar timespan. During the past 12 months, Apple has bought back $40 billion of its own shares — part of a plan to repurchase a total of $60 billion. In the past two weeks Cook says that Apple bought $12 billion of its shares through an “accelerated” repurchase program, and a further $2 billion on the open market. Apple plans to disclose updates to its buyback program either next month or in April.
Cook claims the repurchase drive shows,
“that we are betting on Apple. It means that we are really confident on what we are doing and what we plan to do. We’re not just saying that. We’re showing that with our actions.”
Cook also discussed Apple’s recent acquisitions — noting that in the past 15 months, the company has acquired 21 different companies, with no single purchase exceeding $1 billion. While Apple is not ruling out acquiring large companies for its portfolio, Cook says that there’s also no pressure to follow companies such as Google by doing this:
“We’ve looked at big companies. We don’t have a predisposition not to buy big companies. The money is also not burning a hole in our pocket where we say, ‘let’s make a list of 10 and pick the best one.’ We have no problem spending ten figures for the right company, for the right fit that’s in the best interest of Apple in the long-term. None. Zero.”