$56 million ex-Dixons man John Browett, fired by Apple

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John Browett, the British man who joined Apple as head of retail in April with a notoriously generous $56 million plus “golden hello” (at the $562 share price at the time), has been ejected from the company after just 6 months in the job.

The ex-head of Dixons and former Tesco man was recruited to expand Apple’s retail footprint around the world and was CEO Tim Cook’s first major recruit. At Dixons he was paid around £1 million, making the mega pay out particularly surprising. His short tenure was apparently blighted by discontent with his staffing changes in the Apple stores but, after being in his role for such a short time, it suggests the English man did not fit into the company’s culture from the start.

Scott Forstall, the software engineer responsible for the iOS software used in Apple’s iPads and iPhones was also fired by Cook after the embarrassing glitches with the company’s new mapping application.

Browett will be smarting after relocating himself and his family to California and the promised riches have disappeared but he won’t be left too much out of pocket . When he joined Apple in April, he was awarded 100,000 restricted stock units. 5000 vested in October giving him a healthy $3.25 million .  He was due to receive a further 15,000 in April 2013, with another 20,000 every year after that until April 2017.

Designer, and fellow Brit, Sir Jonathan Ive, was also given more responsibility and oversight on software design giving credence to the theory that he will take over from Cook at some point. Scott Forstall was considered the candidate most likely in the frame before his exit.

Steve Jobs was renowned for his “anti-bozo” hiring and firing policy, where he frequently ditched top executives when they did not meet his high expectations. It looks like Tim Cook is following the Jobs model with the latest surprise departures.

Contrarian Investor UK

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