The Tech Guru: Mary Meeker
Although there is already a woman on the Apple board, former Avon (AVP) CEO Andrea Jung, the Apple board could use another female voice with a strong technical background. There are plenty of capable women in the technology sector that could add value on an Apple board.
Mary Meeker, a former Wall Street analyst, is one of Silicon Valley's most knowledgeable tech gurus. Her annual "State of the Internet" presentation is state-of-the-art. She is also on some other high-profile boards. A tech guru like Meeker would be a welcome presence on an Apple board.
To counter the dearth of minority leadership in Silicon Valley, why not add someone like Dr. Dre to the Apple board? He instantly comes to mind as an entrepreneur and co-founder of the Beats Electronics brand recently acquired by Apple for $3 billion. Dr. Dre may not have invented the Internet like current board member Al Gore infamously said once, but he is definitely much cooler. The Apple board needs someone who can contribute a different social perspective and can help translate that in to new consumer products. Over the next several months, the Apple story is going to be about new product launches (iPhone6 and iWatch) and execution. But over the next several years if Apple wants to remain on top, it must stay at the forefront of innovation as the brand of choice in an increasingly competitive marketplace. Adding new blood, ideas, and diversity to its board is an important step in maintaining Apple's position as a market leader in the future. At the time of publication, the author was long AAPL. This article represents the opinion of a contributor and not necessarily that of TheStreet or its editorial staff. TheStreet Ratings team rates APPLE INC as a Buy with a ratings score of B+. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:
"We rate APPLE INC (AAPL) a BUY. This is driven by a number of strengths, which we believe should have a greater impact than any weaknesses, and should give investors a better performance opportunity than most stocks we cover. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, notable return on equity, expanding profit margins and good cash flow from operations. Although no company is perfect, currently we do not see any significant weaknesses which are likely to detract from the generally positive outlook."
Highlights from the analysis by TheStreet Ratings Team goes as follows:
- AAPL's revenue growth has slightly outpaced the industry average of 2.2%. Since the same quarter one year prior, revenues slightly increased by 4.7%. Growth in the company's revenue appears to have helped boost the earnings per share.
- Although AAPL's debt-to-equity ratio of 0.14 is very low, it is currently higher than that of the industry average. Along with the favorable debt-to-equity ratio, the company maintains an adequate quick ratio of 1.32, which illustrates the ability to avoid short-term cash problems.
- The return on equity has improved slightly when compared to the same quarter one year prior. This can be construed as a modest strength in the organization. When compared to other companies in the Computers & Peripherals industry and the overall market, APPLE INC's return on equity exceeds that of the industry average and significantly exceeds that of the S&P 500.
- 43.45% is the gross profit margin for APPLE INC which we consider to be strong. It has increased from the same quarter the previous year. Along with this, the net profit margin of 22.39% is above that of the industry average.
- Net operating cash flow has slightly increased to $13,538.00 million or 8.26% when compared to the same quarter last year. In addition, APPLE INC has also modestly surpassed the industry average cash flow growth rate of 5.28%.
- You can view the full analysis from the report here: AAPL Ratings Report