According to Forbes, Apple CEO Tim Cook has a net worth of $2 billion. Most of his wealth comes from his stock holdings. He owns 3.3 million shares of the iPhone maker. In fact, he has a net worth that dwarfs that of his closest competitors.
Cook has a varied background. In addition to being the CEO of Apple, he also serves on the board of trustees at Duke University. He earned his MBA in 1988 and comes from modest beginnings. His father was a shipyard worker and his mother worked in a pharmacy.
Tim Cook joined Apple in 1998 and became the company’s Senior Vice President for worldwide operations on August 24, 2011. He was responsible for the company’s sales, services, and support activities. Cook joined Apple at a critical time for the company. It was experiencing declining profits and little growth. Several of his friends attempted to discourage him from joining the company but he insisted on it.
Cook’s compensation package includes a three million-dollar base salary. In addition, he receives bonuses worth another $12 million. Apple also gives Cook large chunks of Apple stock options, which vest over time and count as income. In 2019, Cook earned $113.5 million in stock options and $125 million in cash. His compensation from 2011 to 2020 will total around $930 million, which is a very high percentage of his total income.
The compensation committee of Apple decided Cook’s pay package after reviewing the company’s financial statements. It weighed his performance against 28 peer companies and Apple’s size. As a result, Cook’s pay package was more than twice that of his peers. Further, he was awarded a hefty stock award that would vest in full if he were to retire.
In 2012, Cook was awarded one million shares by the Apple board of directors. Cook later declared that he would give away his entire stock fortune to charity. That same year, Apple acquired Beats Music and Beats Electronics for a total of $3 billion. The following year, Apple launched the iPhone 6 and Apple Watch, two new products that have since made Apple a household name.
The market value of Apple shares has grown tremendously since Tim Cook became CEO. Today, the company’s stock is worth $2.4 trillion. If he had purchased a thousand shares of Apple in 2001, his investment would have grown to $13,000. That’s an incredible increase.
Assuming the company continues to grow, Cook’s salary will rise with it. While investors have criticized Apple’s mega-grants, they have not been able to match Apple’s stellar track record. The S&P 500 produced a return of 366% in the decade following its first grant. Meanwhile, Apple delivered a return of 1,197% in the same decade.