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What would you do with a $90 billion cash stockpile?

January 26, 2012

Serious question by the way.

The company that recently awarded their Chief Executive a US$378 million pay package with share options coming out the proverbial, is currently sitting on a stockpile of $90 billion, something it has been building up for some time now.

With Tim Cook (afore-mentioned CEO) predicting that tablets (specifically, his company’s iPads) will soon outsell PCs, the only bad news coming out of Apple is that the sale of iPods decreased by 21% last year. But then again – who cares? They worked so hard to make sure you can listen to your iTunes purchased content over every single other device, that music players that weren’t wifi or 3g enabled were always going to get phased out for something bigger and better.

Soon enough, if Apple do produce a line of TV sets (which will burn some of that cash until they too become insanely profitable, then undoubtedly all that content will flow across those as well.

So for a company doing so well, and being so profitable, why are they sitting on so much cash? Those of us with a conscience can only imagine the possibilities of how many people around the world could supported, fed, enabled or empowered with such reserves, but Apple, through both Tim Cook and Steve Jobs before him, have never given any indication to the world that they have a conscience. We continue to hear horror stories about the working conditions at FoxConn, the producer of many of Apple’s products, yet seemingly this is an acceptable position for the $378 million man and his cohorts.

With the battle for the electronic wallet imminent, there are still others who predict that Apple is continually building cash reserves in able to compete with the likes of Google Wallet, who in a few short years from now would like to think they can replace the need for banks by giving you the ability to pay for anything and everything from within one of their two ecosystems – your Google account or your Apple account. That would certainly explain the need to build up cash – as a measure to offset enmasse transactions that consumer have in play on their accounts.

So while few people think Apple will simply sit on its treasure chest, the real truth is being kept well hidden for the time being, and as technology goes, anything could change in a heartbeat.

So the question’s out there – what would you do if you were in Tim Cook’s shoes? 


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