Beats? How many CEOs does it take to grow Apple?

Apple has recruited numerous executives of CEO status across the last 12-months, more if reports claiming a Beats buyout turn true. If you look at the different skills these people bring then you'd have to be deeply dumb not to see the company's getting itself together for huge expansion.

Beats: How many CEOs does it take to grow Apple?

Get wise

You should ignore the months of negativity emanating from some parts of the media. They're either biased or stupid. The signs of Apple's expansion plans have been plain even while the critics took the cash. Just look at Apple's new HQ building; just think about all the under-utilized capacity in its server farms. While critics chased page views Apple has quietly assembled the infrastructure for its next big move -- as you'd expect under the leadership of world-class operational genius, Tim Cook.

Each senior hire Apple has made across the last 12-months brings fresh experience and access to new industries. You don’t need to be a rocket scientist to see the pattern forming.

These are the former CEOs joining Apple in the last 12-months I've been able to identify so far (I urge you to add names to the list in comments below if you know of any more):

The CEOs

Angela Ahrendts, Burberry CEO

Paul Deneve, Yves Saint Laurent CEO

Karl Heiselman, Wolff Olins Global CEO

Philip Stanger, Wifarer CEO

If reports of Apple's Beats acquisition prove true, you can add company founders Jimmy Iovine and Dr. Dre to this collection.

You can also add at least a few of the CEOs who formerly ran any of the 23 companies Apple says it has acquired in the last 12+-months: LuxVue, Burstly, BroadMap, Novauris, Cue, Matcha, Topsy, AlgoTrim, Locationary, HopStop, Embark, WiFiSlam, Passif Semi, PrimeSense, SnappyLabs, Matcha and more.

That's a heck of a lot of leadership talent right there. It's incontrovertible -- Apple has a lot of leaders, and this can only mean it intends future expansion into new sectors, technologies, and industries.

This is big news.

It's not just CEOs. All kinds of senior executives have been flocking to Cupertino. There's no way any of these ambitious people at the top of their game would sacrifice their top jobs to sit at a desk and shuffle papers. They know something we don't.


A sampling -- and this really is just a sampling -- of Apple's senior hires across the last 12-15months:

Kevin Lynch (ex Adobe/Macromedia CTO),

VP R&D Ravi Narasimhan,

CMO Michael O'Reilly,

Marcelo Malini Lemago, former Cercacor CTO,

New York Times designer, Arem Duplessis .

Nike design director, Ben Shaffer

EPA Administrator, Lisa P. Jackson

UC Berkeley School of Information academic, Morten T. Hansen

Nokia Lumia photography chief, Ari Partinen

Veteran Washington lobbyist, Amber Cottle

BlackBerry SVP, Sebastian Marineau-Mes

Todd Whitehurst, former VP product development, Senseonics.

NV Energy VP renewable energy, Bobby Hollis.

Philips Research lead, Roy Raymann.

Most previous reports have examined Apple's huge stress on medical in its recent hires, and while that makes a great story I don’t believe that's where Apple's ambitions end.

Tim Cook is building a world-class brains trust tasked with guiding Apple through a period of fast growth.

Hansen, hired to work in the secretive "Apple University" project said last year: "Believe me, there are many talented people there. It's not like it was just Steve Jobs who ran the company."

Jobs may have made it look like a one-man show. Tim Cook (to the "disappointment of some critics) does not. He's putting together a much stronger company than he inherited, equipped with world-class intellectual and industry muscle.

You'd better get ready people, because Apple is about to grow.

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Copyright © 2014 IDG Communications, Inc.

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