In August 2018, Apple achieved another milestone! It was officially declared the first $1 Trillion company. The highly valued corporation is renowned for its superior technological innovation and products. From Macs to iPhones to iPods – its products have witnessed tremendous success in the international market. However, when you dig a little deeper, you’ll realize that the figures did not always skyrocket. The company had its shares of ups and downs before it emerged on the top.
The Foundation of Apple Inc
It was from 1976 to 1984 that the foundation of the company was established with the release of Apple I and Apple II. The two Steves of Apple – Jobs and Wozniak, had a shared love for technology and often worked together on the Atari Arcade Game. Along with Ronald Wayne, an electronics industry worker who provided his administrative guidance, Apple Computer Company was founded on April 1, 1976.
Apple I was built single-handedly by Wozniak. It was a kit that could be brought to use only after adding a monitor and keyboard. Jobs handled the sales, and in July 1976, it was sold at a market price of US $666.66. Wozniak suggested that while building the product, he wasn’t thinking about the change it might bring to the world, but just wanted to reflect how much he could innovate with limited resources.
Weeks later, Wayne sold back his share, and Apple Computer Inc was established on January 3, 1977. Multimillionaire Mike Markkula provided the required business expertise, and the two made enough money to invest in the Apple II. Apple began to generate profits worth USD 2 million and influenced numerous computer enthusiasts, who then created and sold their programs.
Apple’s board dismissed Jobs…
However, in the mid-1980s, Apple failed to create updates that could catch up on the commercial level. Apple III and the Apple Lisa, the fresh innovations, did not fare well in the technology market. The company started to crumble, and even after the leap in revenue after the release of Macintosh in 1984, internal struggles were prevalent. Apple’s board dismissed Jobs and hired John Sculley as a CEO. Sculley served the company till the year 1993, during which Apple enjoyed strong financial growth with the manufacture of new products like laser printers, Macintosh Portable, PowerBooks, the Newton, etc. Yet, one big downside remained. The international market was dominated by none other than Windows operational computer systems as they had an affordable range. The comparison only showed the stall of Apple, despite high earnings. Gradually, by the 1990s, the platform of Macintosh became outdated as well.
Bill Gates invested $150 million…
This was when Apple realized the significance of management under Steve Jobs. NeXT, a company founded by Steve Jobs after he left Apple, was purchased, and he again became the CEO of Apple. In 1997, the billionaire Bill Gates stepped into the rescue and invested $150 million into the company. What followed was the continuous flow of successful product releases in the market, starting from iMac to iPods from 2001 to 2010. Apple then dominated the smartphone market with the iPhone, opened up its very own e-commerce store ‘iTunes,’ and launched branded retail outlets known as – ‘Apple Store.’
As of February 2020, Apple Stores are operational in 25 countries, and many more are yet to set-up worldwide. Apple might be criticized for its high price, and for not being innovative enough, the company has always been excellent in marketing and branding. The moral of the story? Well, one can analyze that there is no straight path to success, even when you are the brilliant man, Steve Jobs.