The new Apple: Cook gives $50m to Stanford

February 2, 2012

Under Steve Jobs, the Cupertino, California-based Mac, iPhone, iPad and world style maker was widely criticized for being tight fisted with its money. However, even as Apple stacks on more cash — the company pegs reserves at more than $90 billion — the company’s new chief executive has loosened the purse strings and begun to give generously.

People tend to forget, but Apple’s been a lead participant in U2 rocker Bono’s Product RED charity since 2006, a collaboration that has yielded more than $50 million for AIDS research and prevention.

CEO Tim Cook reminded the world of that at a Town Hall meeting after the company’s most recent quarterly results were reported. Further, he told the gathered employees that Apple had also given $50 million to Stanford University Hospitals since Cook became Apple’s chief executive.

The gift was split evenly between Stanford’s children’s hospital and a project to build a new main hospital.

This is just latest the break with Apple under Steve Jobs’ parsimonious past — Cook instituted a program whereby the company will match employee’s charitable gifts up to $10,000 per year.

That said, Apple chief executive Tim Cook is famously well grounded. Despite an estimated worth of more than $100 million dollars, his home measures a modest 2,400 square feet and a vacation usually means hiking in a national park.

With $97.6 billion in cash and short-term investments to draw on, Apple and Cook could top up half the planet’s charities and still have billions left to invest.

What should Apple do with its massive stash of cash?

via Ars Technica

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