Apple CEO Tim Cook (L) and Jonathan Ive, Apple’s Chief Design Officer, look over the new Mac Pro Display and computer at Apple’s Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) in San Jose, California on June 3, 2019.
Brittany Hosea-Small | AFP | Getty Images
Apple announced on June 27 that Jony Ive, its head of design and the person who many observers considered the company’s spiritual captain, will leave the company later this year.
It’s an emotional topic for Apple and its executives. After The Wall Street Journal published a story with unflattering details about Ive’s last few years at Apple, reporting that he was seldom in the office and did not give the design team the personal attention they craved, CEO Tim Cook publicly blasted the story as “absurd. “
Cook needn’t have bothered. The market doesn’t seem to care about Ive and what scores of articles have called the “end of an era. “
In fact, when the markets closed on Tuesday, Apple was up 1.49% since the company’s surprise announcement. (Apple dropped less than 1% on the news and immediately recovered.) Apple shareholders have voted with their money, and Ive’s departure has not sunk the stock, as he fretted about in a 2015 profile.
There are a few reasons why the markets haven’t walloped Apple, Wedbush Securities analyst Dan Ives said.
First is timing. Regardless of Cook’s objections, it was fairly clear that Ive had taken a big step back after his 2015 promotion to chief design officer and away from day-to-day management.
“If it happened 3 years ago, the stock would be down significantly,” Ives said. “The tea leaves were down inside and outside of Cupertino that he was starting to take a step back from the business.”
In addition, both the U.S. and China announced a truce in the trade war between the two countries over the weekend, which likely had a much bigger effect on Apple stock, given that Apple both sells into the Chinese market and does the majority of its complicated assembling on the mainland.
“So much of the…