Apple stores could open as soon as mid-April

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tulsa.apple.store.1
Closed in Tulsa.
Photo: Brad Gibson / Cult of Mac

Apple told its retail employees that it will likely start reopening Apple Stores sometime during the first half of April, according to memo sent to various store employees on Tuesday.

Apple shuttered 467 of its stores outside of China as a precaution as COVID-19 rapidly advanced around the world.

Coronavirus keeps China’s Apple Stores shuttered into next week

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Apple store in Shanghai
The Apple Store in Shanghai.
Photo: FullbridgeProgram/Flickr CC

Apple Stores across China will remain closed into next week amid the growing coronavirus crisis.

All 42 stores were closed this week because of the outbreak but were scheduled to open Feb. 10. In a memo to Apple Store employees this morning, Apple retail chief Deidre O’Brien indicated a reopening time is on hold until further notice.

Tim Cook opens the doors for Fifth Avenue Apple Store reopening

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Tim Cook opens doors
Tim Cook and retail boss Deirdre O’Brien were both present for the reopening.
Screenshot: CNBC

Tim Cook opened the doors at the reopening of Apple’s iconic Fifth Avenue Apple Store in New York, just as the iPhone 11 went on sale.

Cook counted down to the 8am EST opening with fans, then pushed open the large glass doors to let customers inside the refurbished Apple Store. He even threw out high fives as people filed into the store to buy their new handsets and Apple Watches Series 5s.

Apple’s new retail boss awarded $8 million of restricted stock options

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Deirdre O’Brien, a 30-year Apple veteran, will lead Apple’s Retail and People teams.
30-year Apple veteran Deirdre O’Brien will handle the company's retail push.
Photo: Apple

Deirdre O’Brien, Apple’s new retail boss, received a nice bonus alongside her recent promotion. According to filings made by Apple, O’Brien was awarded restricted stock options valued at more than $8 million.

In total, she was given two sets of 23,922 restricted stock units: one performance-based, and one which will vest across three years through August, 2021. Well, that’s one reason to stay in the job!

Quit or canned? Why is Angela Ahrendts leaving Apple? [Opinion]

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Ahrendts
Did Angela Ahrendts jump or was she pushed?
Photo: Leander Kahney/Cult of Mac

When Apple fires an executive, the company is rarely straightforward about the situation. Apple never puts out a press release stating plainly that the executive was canned. So Tuesday’s unexpected announcement that Angela Ahrendts, Apple’s head of retail, is leaving in April led many to suspect she was fired.

That’s because the announcement came as a surprise and seems rushed. She’s certainly not retiring or quitting to join another company. The press release phrase “new personal and professional pursuits” sounds like code for “canned.”

Tim Cook hypes up new retail boss in email to employees

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Apple’s new Senior Vice President of Retail + People Deirdre O’Brien with Tim Cook.
Apple’s new Senior Vice President of Retail + People Deirdre O’Brien with Tim Cook and her predecessor, Angela Ahrendts.
Photo: Apple

Apple‘s CEO told his employees that the company’s new head of retail sales is “one of Apple’s most passionate and experienced advocates for our customers and employees.” Tim Cook also highlighted Deirdre O’Brien’s previous experience with Apple retail operations.

These comments came in an email sent this morning to retail emplyees.  The full text of this is now available.

What you need to know about Deirdre O’Brien, Apple’s new head of retail

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Deirdre O’Brien, a 30-year Apple veteran, will lead Apple’s Retail and People teams.
30-year Apple veteran Deirdre O’Brien will handle the company's retail push.
Photo: Apple

Apple tapped Deirdre O’Brien to be its new retail boss today in light of the news that Angela Ahrendts plans to leave the company.

While O’Brien may not be a household name to most Apple fans, she’s been with the company for more than three decades. From the days of Steve Jobs saving Apple from bankruptcy to watching Tim Cook leading the company to a first-ever $1 trillion valuation, O’Brien has seen huge changes during her tenure with the iPhone-maker. Now she’s set to be one of the most powerful people in Silicon Valley.

Here are six things you didn’t know about the new Apple retail boss.

Apple names new retail boss as Angela Ahrendts exits company

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Angela Ahrendts.
Angela Ahrendts at the iPhone X keynote.
Photo: Apple

Longtime Apple retail boss Angela Ahrendts is leaving the company after reshaping Apple’s online and retail strategies over the last five year.

Apple revealed today that it has named Deirdre O’Brien as the new senior vice president of Retail + People. Ahrendts, who was once looked at as a possible successor to Apple CEO Tim Cook, is leaving the company for new personal professional pursuits.