Apple CEO Tim Cook says he’s Prepping his Successors

Apple CEO Tim Cook and retail chief Angela Ahrends talk to BuzzFeed at new Chicago Apple Store (Photo: BuzzFeed)

Apple CEO Tim Cook came to Chicago to help christen a new Apple Store, and ended up talking potential successors.

“I see my role as CEO to prepare as many people as I can to be CEO, and that’s what I’m doing. And then the board makes a decision at that point in time,” Cook said, in an interview with BuzzFeed News.

For the BuzzFeed video chat, Cook sat side by side with Angela Ahrendts, the former Burberry CEO who runs Apple’s retail division, and has been mentioned as a potential future Apple CEO.

Ahrendts called reports that she could be in the running to be the next CEO “fake news,” and “silly” to BuzzFeed.

Cook, 56, joined Apple in 1998 as senior vice-president of worldwide operations, rising to chief operating officer. He was named CEO in August 2011, when co-founder Steve Jobs stepped down due to illness. Jobs died three months later, in October, a few days after the introduction of the iPhone 4S.

While Cook would be considered rather young to retire, some longtime Apple watchers have speculated that he could be interested in a future career in politics. He has been more outspoken politically than previous Apple CEOs. Cook has denied future political plans.

Otherwise, Cook talked about the new iPhone X, which begins pre-sales Friday at 3 a.m. ET, and addressed reports that supply will be constrained.

“We’ll see what happens,” was his response to the question, and then he added, “We’ll be working as hard as possible to make as many as possible.”

SOURCE: USA Today – Jefferson Graham