$100B Is A Powerful Accelerant For Share Price Says Goldman's Bill Shope
"Meanwhile, the $100 billion capital allocation program through 2015 should provide a critical downside buffer for the shares in the short-term; over time, as the downside risks to Apple's steady state earnings power and cash flow subside, this hefty capital allocation activity and the prospects for steady increases in the dividend and buyback should provide a powerful accelerant for the share price recovery."
Apple Inc. (AAPL) has hired Xerox Corp. (XRX) Chief Financial Officer Luca Maestri as its corporate controller, a sign that the iPhone and iPad maker may be considering a succession plan for its own CFO.
Peter Oppenheimer, Apple’s CFO since 2004, began his ascent through the management ranks as controller for the Americas in 1996. Like Maestri, he joined Apple after serving as finance chief elsewhere -- in Oppenheimer’s case it was at Automatic Data Processing Inc. Apple said in June that its last controller, Betsy Rafael, would retire in October 2012.
“Moving from Xerox to Apple is a step up, even going from CFO to controller,” John Bright, an analyst at Avondale Partners LLC, said in an interview. “Is this a stepping stone? It certainly could be.”
The move could be a signal that Apple is ready to plan for Oppenheimer’s succession, Ben Reitzes, an analyst at Barclays Capital, said in a note to investors. Apple has mulled the future of the position since at least 2011, when the company approached Blackstone Group LP’s CFO about the job, people familiar with the matter said at the time.
Apple hiring Maestri could also mean an increase in buybacks and dividends, as the company looks to take advantage of its cash hoard, Reitzes said.
“Maestri is a champion of shareholder return,” Reitzes said in the note. “The hiring of Maestri could mean that Apple is leaning in that direction long-term.”