Apple’s Jonathan Ive Might Be Moving Back to England: Rumor
Jonathan Ive, Apple’s
leading industrial designer, apparently wants to spend more time in his native England, if the rumors circulating are true. Ive outlined a plan to Apple’s board of directors, where he would commute from the Cupertino campus to his home in Somerset, England. Apparently, the board didn’t go for the idea and they’ve “been at loggerheads” ever since. Ive and his wife would like to move back to England so they can raise and educate their twin boys there.
A family friend recently stated, “'Unfortunately he is just too valuable to Apple and they told him in no uncertain terms that if he headed back to England he would not be able to sustain his position with them.”
Back in 2008, Ive received a “golden handcuffs” option that allowed him to buy Apple stock when it was at a much lower price than it is today. He was able to buy Apple stock in the $100 range as long as he agreed to stay with the company. He is now eligible to sell the stock, which is reportedly worth approximately $30 million. Apple stock prices have gone up considerably since 2008, this week closing at $348.16 a share.
An Apple spokesperson predictably answered with “no comment” when questioned about Ive’s plans for the future. With Apple CEO Steve Jobs on a medical leave of absence, and Jonathan Ive possibly heading back to England, two of Apple’s most influential players may not be around to shape the future of Apple. Jobs recently refused to outline a plan of succession to the board of directors, although Tim Cook is the obvious choice. Will Apple still be as successful a company without its two most influential men? I certainly hope so. I would hate to see Apple head back to the dark days when Gil Amelio was in charge.