Steve Jobs was an American business mogul and the co-founder of Apple Inc.
Who was credited for resuscitating the company from a near bankruptcy to massive success in the shortest time humanly possible.
|Net Worth:||10.2 Billion $|
|Born:||February 24, 1955|
|Country of Origin:||United States Of America|
|Source Of Wealth:||American business magnate and investor, CEO of Apple Inc|
|Spouse:||Laurene Powell (m. 1991–2011)|
|Died:||October 5, 2011|
Brief Bio (The Rise Of Apple Inc)
From the age of 5, Steve Jobs grew up learning the art of breaking things apart and building them back again.
This gave him confidence around building the known from the unknown. It instilled in him the desire to assemble machines that made people’s lives better.
Jobs’ hand in the growth and success of Apple stands evident. By understanding what mattered most in a company; people, Jobs outlook was to value people.
Though Jobs isn’t recognized in the lists of world’s philanthropists, his input was on what he could do best.
That included, providing over 34,000 full-time jobs, revolutionize handling of digital music, enabling the blind to read a text and identify currency, enabling video conferencing for the masses and introducing a new way of think about computers, leadership, and business.
Until his death, Jobs made sure he gave in the way he knew best. The belief guided jobs, “Life is about creating and living experiences that are worth sharing.”
Career (How he reshaped the Entire Computer Industry)
Jobs’ career in computing took shape at the age of 11 when he came across what he termed as the first computer; a teletype printer that took instructions in and produced an output after some time.
He developed a sincere desire to interact and create something meaningful with it. Realizing he needed parts to complete his frequency counter at the age of 12.
Jobs called Bill Hewlett of Hewlett Packard and asked if he could help him with the parts.
Despite not knowing Jobs, Bill was thrilled by his courage.
For about 20 minutes, Bill engaged Jobs in a conversation to find out his interest and later offered him a job for the following summer.
That marked the beginning of a relationship Jobs would depend on in his business.
At HP that Jobs saw the first desktop computer that was ever made; HP9100, the self-contained device that could be programmed in BASIC and APL.
He then began writing programs on it whenever he was allowed to use it.
Jobs would later meet Steve Wozniak who was the most electronics-savvy person he had ever met. They became best friends, doing projects together and later co-founding Apple Computers with him.
Together, the developed the blue box, a device that they used to tap into the AT&T network and make free phone calls.
The two had seen an article that featured a gentleman who was able to make free phone calls. Their curiosity led them to build the digital blue box in 3 weeks while their success taught them that “they could build little things to control big things” as long as they had set their mind to do it.
Though they risked being arrested and had to stop producing blue boxes, Jobs found the inspiration to make the Apple computers.
At 17 years of age, Jobs joined Reed College but dropped out after 6 months when he couldn’t figure out what he wanted to do with his life and if staying in college would help him clarify the situation.
That gave him the freedom only to take the classes that he found interesting; in particular, the calligraphy classes.
Jobs had noticed that posters in the school compound had beautifully shaped letters and was keen to learn who they were done.
He learned the serif and sanserif font faces, character spacing and 10 years later; Jobs would use the same fonts to build a computer with multiple font faces.
When he was offered a job as a technician for Atari, Jobs convinced Wozniak to work with him to create circuit boards for Arcade game in 1973.
Jobs later left for India to pursue Spiritual Enlightenment. After 7 months, Jobs returned having become a firm Zen Buddhist. By then, Wozniak had in mind to build a personal computer for his own use.
In 1976, Jobs and Wozniak began building the Apple I PC from Jobs’ parents’ garage and called their venture, Apple. Jobs sold his Volkswagen Microbus while Wozniak sold his HP Scientific calculator to raise the required initial capital of $1350. This success made them famous among many computer hobbyists.
With the Apple computer ready, Jobs made a deal with a nearby shop to supply 50 computers. Seeing that they had no more capital, they decided to buy the parts they needed in shops that would allow them to pay in 30 days.
They built 100 computers, sold 50 at double the cost of production and paid their debt in 29 days. The remaining 50 computers became their profit as they sold them.
Jobs’ hunger to provide a computer suitable for software hobbyists grew with the success of Apple I.
He knew they needed a machine they could use to write and test programs as he desired when he was 12.
Together with Wozniak, they built Apple II that had color graphics and a keyboard.
The problem came about when Jobs realized that they didn’t have enough money to complete their production.
As it was his duty, Jobs reached out to a venture capitalist; Mike Markkula, a retired product manager of Intel, asking him to become an equal partner at Apple.
Mike funded the venture and Apple II was developed as a complete package and featured at the West Coast Computer Faire.
Looking back, Jobs noted that Apple I earned the corporation $774, 000, Apple II sent the company’s sales up by 700% in 3 years to $139 million and by 1980 when Apple went public, its market value went to $1.2 billion by the end of the first day.
Exit from Apple and Return to Rescue
With the massive growth of Apple Company, Jobs hired a marketing expert John Sculley as Apple’s CEO.
Meanwhile, Apple Lisa was produced but performed dismally in the market bringing down Apple’s market credibility.
Jobs knew he had to make a quick turn to rescue the company.
He visited about 80 manufacturing companies in Japan and returned to California to build the first automated computer factory in the world.
He then gathered a team of A-players engineers to reinvent Apple II and come up with the Macintosh computer and a new marketing strategy.
Though he targeted to sell the Mac at $1000, upon completion, it could only be sold at $2450.
The price was too high for the target market; home users and any attempt to pitch it as a business computer proved futile.
The computer had less memory, no networking capability, and no hard drive, all of which Apple’s competitors had taken care of in their models.
As the market went into recess in 1984, clones of the Mac became cheaper and available.
That sent Apple’s sales on a downward spiral. At the same time, Jobs realized that Sculley’s vision for Apple was different from his.
While Jobs understood the need for better leadership to unite various parts of the corporation, Sculley was more concerned about being the CEO. Their relationship worsened and Sculley convinced the board to dismiss Jobs from the company.
1985 saw Jobs jobless. He had been ousted from the company he had built with Wozniak from the little capital and seen grow to a $2 billion corporation with over 4000 employees in 9 years.
He was disappointed.
At first, Jobs contemplated leaving Silicon Valley. He reached out to those who had supported him when he was building Apple and apologized to them.
He felt he had failed the previous generation of entrepreneurs by failing to grow Apple. After a few months, Jobs rediscovered the passion he had when he started Apple and started all over again.
NEXT was born, a company Jobs began with the aim of producing technologically advanced workstations. With the cost of NEXT workstations proving prohibitive, Jobs transitioned to software development.
In 1996, Apple bought NEXT at $429 million, a move that saw Jobs return to Apple as a board member and advisor to the then CEO Gilbert F. Amelio.
Beside NEXT, Jobs bought The Graphics Group Company and named it Pixar.
With Pixar, he went on to create the first ever computer-animated feature film, Toy Story followed by Finding Nemo and The Incredibles.
Pixar became the most successful animation studio in the world promoting a merger with Walt Disney in 2006 hence making Jobs Disney’s major shareholder.
Despite Jobs return to Apple, the company was still making losses and on the verge of bankruptcy.
CEO Amelio resigned, and Jobs took over. He noticed that most of the employees felt that for Apple to become profitable, its perceived main competitor, Microsoft, had to lose. This attitude wasn’t going to resuscitate a dying Apple.
Jobs restructured the company by re-establishing Apple’s original values, changing the stock options and awarding himself an annual salary of $1. He also approached Microsoft’s Bill Gates with the aim to patch up things.
Jobs’ return marked the birth of nifty products such as iMac, Mac book, iPod, iPad, iPhone and the world’s largest online music store and iTunes.
He also devised adverts with a unique slogan, ‘Think Different’. This shot Apple’s stocks to $199.99 per share in 2007.
What kept Jobs going all through was his love for his work and the people. In a speech he once made at Stanford, he said,
“Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work and the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking and don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you will know when you find it and like any great relationship, it gets better and better as the years roll on. So keep looking, don’t settle.”
How Rich Was Steve Jobs? (Net Worth)
During the first 9 years of Apple, Jobs led the company through success that translated to exponential growth in his net worth.
At 23 years of age, his net worth was $1 million, $10 million at 24 years and $100 million when he was 25. Interesting to note, Jobs wasn’t thrilled about financial wealth; instead, he was more excited that his team lived to fulfill their dream, “A computer for the rest of us.”
At the time of his death in 2011, Forbes stated Jobs’ net worth as $7 billion. Most of his wealth came from Pixar where he owned about $4.47 billion of Disney stock.
Here’s a complete video about his Life.
How was his childhood years? (Some Surprising Facts)
His biological parents; Joanne Carole Schieble, a Catholic from Swiss and German descent and Abdulfattah Jandali, an Arab Muslim from Syria met at the University of Wisconsin.
His mother opted to give him up for adoption after her father rejected her relationship with Jandali.
According to Schieble, the right parents for her child had to be graduates.
Her plan backfired when the initial family that met the qualification rejected Jobs saying they wanted to adopt a girl.
Even though his adoptive parents Paul and Clara Jobs were glad to have him, Jobs’ biological mother felt that they weren’t right for him and refused to sign the final adoption papers.
Paul was a coast guard, a machinist by trade who never graduated from high school.
Clara was an accountant but had never graduated from college. After promising Schieble that they would ensure Jobs went to college, she let them have him.
At the age of 5, Paul gave Jobs a part of his workbench and small tools he would use to learn everything he knew in his field.
He even went on to introduce the little he knew on electronics to the young Jobs. With a new life in Silicon Valley after the family relocated, Jobs new life consisted of engineers for neighbors.
Despite being a sharp student, the formal school wasn’t Jobs cup of tea; he needed something more exciting to get him to cooperate with his teachers.
It was only after his fourth-grade teacher bribed him into working harder that he became more passionate about his studies.
With renewed zeal, he studied so hard that year that his teachers asked his parents to let him skip the next two years and head straight to junior school.
They rejected the offer but allowed him to jump the 5th grade as he moved to a new school.
Jobs became more of a lone ranger, and the few friends he had were those who loved to tinker around with electronic gadgets.
Steve Job’s Personal Life (Wife, Children, Health)
Jobs met Laurene Powell at Stanford Graduate School for Business when he was giving a lecture, and she was a student. He couldn’t take his eyes off her and often lost track of his thoughts.
After the lecture, he met her in the parking lot and asked her out for dinner, marking the beginning of a relationship that led to marriage.
He proposed to her on January 1st, 1990 and married her on March 18, 1991, in a Buddhist ceremony at the Ahwahnee hotel in Yosemite National Park.
They went to have three children; a son, Reed and two daughters, Erin and Eve.
From a relationship with his first girlfriend, Chrisann Brennan, Jobs had a daughter, Lisa Brennan-Jobs who he wasn’t keen to care for until she turned 7. She moved in with Jobs in the late 1980s.
In 2003, Jobs was diagnosed with cancer in his pancreases. At first, his doctor advised him to go home and put his family in order, but after a biopsy, it was discovered that the rare type of cancer could be cured through surgery.
Jobs insisted on giving Eastern treatment options a priority and adopted a vegan diet. Seeing that his choice wasn’t able to eliminate the tumor, he agreed to go through surgery in 2004 and recovered fully.
Six years later his health deteriorated and he took six months to leave of absence to undergo a liver transplant. He was grateful to get a liver from an organ donor who died from a car crash in their mid-20s. The operation was successful giving Jobs a renewed life.
After a year and a half of returning to work, Jobs was granted a medical leave of absence in January 2011 to focus on his health. He resigned from the position of Apple’s CEO on August 24, 2011. Jobs wrote to the board,
“I have always said if there ever came a day when I could no longer meet my duties and expectations as Apple’s CEO, I would be the first to let you know. Unfortunately, that day has come.”
Job named Tim Cook, the former head of worldwide sales and operations at Apple as his successor. He died on October 5, 2011, at his Palo Alto, California home surrounded by his wife, children, and sisters.
The most obvious aspect of Jobs life was his love for his work, it brought him back to his senses and kept him going through the hardest times of his life.
“You’ve got to find what you love, and that is as true for work as it is for your lovers.”