Apple Computer, 2006
Meanwhile, with its profit-fueling iPod product line, Apple had ventured aggressively into areas that seemed distant from its traditional focus on designing and selling Macintosh computers. Jobs faced a new variation on an old question: Was Apple’s recent success merely another blip in the company’s up and down history, or had Jobs finally found a sustainable strategy?
Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak, a pair of 20-something college dropouts, founded Apple Computer on April Fool’s Day, 1976.5 Working out of the Jobs family’s garage in Los Altos, California, they built a computer circuit board that they named the Apple I. Within several months, they had made 200 sales and taken on a new partner—A.C. “Mike” Markkula, Jr., a freshly minted millionaire who had retired from Intel at the age of 33. Markkula, who was instrumental in attracting venture capital, was
________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ Professor David B. Yoffie and Research Associate Michael Slind prepared this case from published sources. This case derives from earlier cases, including “Apple Computer 2002,” HBS No. 702-469, by Professor David B. Yoffie and Research Associate Yusi Wang, and “Apple Computer, 2005,” HBS No. 705-469, by Professor David B. Yoffie. HBS cases are developed solely as the basis for class discussion. Cases are not intended to serve as endorsements, sources of primary data, or illustrations of effective or ineffective management. Copyright © 2006, 2007 President and Fellows of Harvard College. To order copies or request permission to reproduce materials, call 1-800-5457685, write Harvard Business School Publishing, Boston, MA 02163, or go to http://www.hbsp.harvard.edu. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, used in a spreadsheet, or transmitted in any form or by any means—electronic, mechanical,...