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Retail Chief John Browett Receives First Disbursement of Signing Bonus Apple Stock

Discussion in 'Mac Blog Discussion' started by MacRumors, Oct 23, 2012.

  1. macrumors bot



    John Browett, Apple's retail vice president, has received the first vestment from his signing bonus of 100,000 restricted stock units (RSUs) according to a filing with the SEC. He was granted the first batch of 5,000 shares today with 2,159 shares being sold for tax withholding purposes.

    Unlike options, restricted stock units do not require the recipient to purchase stock at an exercise price in order to receive the shares. The RSUs simply convert to actual shares on the vesting dates, although there are tax implications to the conversion that generally result in recipients immediately selling off at least some portion of their grants as they vest.

    After withholding, Browett owns 2,841 shares of AAPL stock worth $1.74 million at current prices. He is due 95,000 more shares of stock worth some $58 million over the next 5 years, assuming continued employment.

    The stock grants are bound to be controversial given the perceived missteps that Browett has made with Apple retail recently, with rumors of hour cutbacks and layoffs as well as an ongoing shift in Apple's retail store strategy to focus on profits rather than customer service.

    Article Link: Retail Chief John Browett Receives First Disbursement of Signing Bonus Apple Stock
  2. macrumors 601


    I cannot express how much I hate that this guy still has a job at Apple. Or any job for that matter, his overly simplistic business ideas are the epitome of upper management who have no idea how retail actually works.
  3. macrumors regular

    Where can I sign up for the job?
  4. macrumors 601


    Sorry, but the guy even looks like a douchebag. And from a business perspective, he seems like the most un-Apple-like guy they could have hired. As a shareholder, I'm not happy about it.
  5. Quu
    macrumors 68000


    I too am not happy with this guys profit centric approach to retail. Apple already makes more money per square foot of their retail stores than any other in the world, there should be little for him to do but sit back and think of new ways their stores can provide more services (in the same vain of the genius bars).

    I hate this guy.
  6. macrumors 68000


    The really sad part is Apple believes any of these guys to be worth that kind of money.
  7. macrumors regular

    I just can't believe how much money these guys make.
  8. macrumors member

    I just can't help but think that all this fear-mongering bullcrap going around about this guy is simply the typical fear-mongering bullcrap that runs deep within Apple subjects from "fanboys" and vitriolic haters alike.

    WHAT could he have POSSIBLY done in such a short time that deserves any criticism or praise for that matter? All the stuff that people say that "sucks" about him are the same things they said before he even took the spot! Let him prove himself to be good or crap before running around with hypotheticals and trying to pass them off as facts!

    What FACTS, backed by PROOF do any of you have that he's changed Apple's retail strategy at all? And please don't quote rumors. Things that have ACTUALLY BEEN IMPLEMENTED? And please don't point to "This one time at an Apple Store I had worse customer service than the time before it" or anything non sequitur like that. I'm genuinely curious myself.
  9. macrumors 6502a

    You mean you don't want to make a profit in retail? Must have missed that lecture in school.
  10. macrumors 601


    He destroyed PC World, Dixons and Curries customer service in the UK. Destroyed. They went from being companies that had acceptable support to just downright awful over a very short period of time. I've seen his changes happen over time, it killed the companies retail presence, in a time when online is consistently winning price, people expect that by going to a store, what they're paying for is the customer support in store, if you remove that, you might as well go online. That is why his plans are flawed.

    See the above. Obsessing over profits isn't a good thing, you need a balance.
  11. macrumors member

    You obviously must not understand Capitalism or Corporate ladders, or for that matter Entrepreneurship that much.

    Apple is a company worth over $600 Billion dollars.... who do you think is responsible for that? The guys who have worked through thick and thin to make it that. You create, or help create a great company, and you get compensated greatly. The more you help make the company valuable, the more your piece will be. There are no caps or limitations, the sky is the limit. Apple's Executives deserve all the money they get and then some. They are the men and women behind APPLE! The world's greatest company! There's something to be said about that.

    Now, "Browett" is new, has contributed diddly to the making of Apple or the future of Apple for that matter.... yet. Which is why he's under such a microscope in terms of seeing whether or not he's worthy of his position and pay. However, at the same time, it's why we can't "lay claim" one way or another that he's "great" or "sucks" because he simply hasn't been here long enough to implement anything. Anybody who says otherwise is merely hypothesizing and speaking from voices within their own head.... unless they are an Apple executive or bonafide (non hyperbole rumor affiliated, non bitter ex-employee, but actual fundamentally affiliated) affiliate.


    Thank you for the explanation. Sounds horrid, indeed. However, still, we have no proof or information as to how good or bad he's doing for Apple, and no crystal ball to see what he'll do in the future.

    Obviously Apple management saw something in him, or some key ways that his "style" that may not have worked elsewhere, can benefit and/or balance out the Apple team. Either they're crazy or brilliant! Time will tell.

    I for one wish Ron Johnson stayed around, anyway. He's become a joke to the Corporate World in his mis-matched role at JCP as the company flails downwards while his attempt to introduce some "class" is losing their "Coupon-driven" "uncool" crowd style. He's ruining his great reputation because he chose such an ill-fit job. His presence at Apple, being another one of the key players of the "Jobs era", would be greatly beneficial to have around with the rest of the key players who are still (thankfully) running the show.
  12. macrumors 6502a

    Your 2nd paragraph - Have you ever been to a Curry's or PC World? My. God. They're the complete opposite of an Apple store. Ugly interior, pushy staff, broken store displays etc.

    Your 3rd paragraph - How about increasing workload by decreasing numbers of staff in Apple Stores? There was an article about it on here a month or so ago. They've since reversed the decision, but that still begs the question as to why this bad smell is still an Apple VP.
  13. macrumors 6502a

    I believe the article you are referring to is the one where staffing was decreased in Europe, where their economy sucks and ALL businesses are seeing reductions in staffing and hours.
  14. macrumors 68000


    Instead, give him a first-class ticket back to the UK.
  15. macrumors 6502a

    What all you guys want is for the guy to sit back and do nothing and collect his money. Or even hire boatloads of employees even if it costs Apple more. Because Hey, Apple has billions to spend frivolously...

    Apple is still a business at the end of the day and one that likes to make money while spending less of it.
  16. macrumors newbie

    This guy is a moron. Did Apple not look at his résumé. He used to work for Tesco which has had the worst customer service in the UK for large supermarkets in 10 years. Not to mention culling staff left right and centre on profits, just like he's doing at Apple. It just doesn't work like that in Apples new age of retail. I say get rid!
  17. macrumors 6502

    Dixons, Currys and PC World have been famous for their appalling customer service since they first existed. I clearly remember the former two being a joke as far back as the 1970s. He might not have done much to improve things, but inventing stuff to make him look bad is just pointless circlejerking because it's been decreed by the macrumors fanboy crowd that it's unacceptable to say anything nice about him.

    Tim Cook is a money man. Period. Major changes undertaken by Browett would with absolutely no question have passed across Cook's desk and been subject to his approval. Browett was likely even making changes to meet whatever goals and targets Cook had set him. Blame the leader if you want to pin it on someone, not his deputy.

    People seem to have this ridiculous notion that Apple is still some small, touchy-feely company that wants to give its customers a big hug and sent them chocolates on their birthdays. Apple is a mercenary money making machine, and under Cook its only going to be more so. Get over this idea that "he's not an Apple person". He's EXACTLY an Apple person, even if you can't see yet what Apple has become.
  18. Quu
    macrumors 68000


    Quoting me out of context and a personal attack? haha
  19. Macist, Oct 24, 2012
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2012

    macrumors 6502a

    The level of uncritical Chicago School capitalist ideological incorporation Americans come out with is mind-boggling. They've really convinced you that highly-paid executives are god-men striding the Earth!

    Browett's skillset, as watchers of UK retail know, lies in degrading and dumbing down the shopping experience until your brand gets bad reviews all over the place and winds up on TV consumer complaints shows. If you want Apple Stores to continue to be a cut above Lidl, Poundstretcher, Primark or Currys then hiring this chap makes zero sense. The fact his early actions in the retail division have been dreadful is no surprise. He's just doing his job. The same crappy job he always does.

    Talking of UK retail, the only shop better than Apple Stores (at their best) is John Lewis, which is a mid to high-end department store run as a workers' 'partnership' (a sort of mild co-op). While not some workers paradise each worker gets a good chunk of bonus if profits are good and other untypical perks and benefits. Staff are not merely gormless teens but you'll find grey-haired people that have been there 30 years and know customer service inside out. See, *stands back in amazement* if you pay your staff reasonably and, even more importantly, treat them with some semblance of respect and not merely as hollowed out 'human resources' you get better staff giving great service to your customers who go off raving how great your brand is. Funny that.

    Yet we live in a topsy-turvy world where stuffed suits get paid lottery wins each year and get bonuses and golden goodbyes even in their work is poor as that how you 'get the best' out of these superhumans. But the rank and file must have poor benefits and low pay as you have to keep 'em hungry. It is of course bonkers.
  20. macrumors member

    As a long time consumer of electronics products in the UK, from Apple as well as Dixons Stores Group - PC World, Dixons (when it had high street stores), Currys - I can say with first hand experience that the DSG consumer experience has always been rubbish. They've always had a pile 'em high and sell 'em not-exactly-cheaply approach. The stores were always ugly.

    As regards Tesco though, I have to say that my experience contradicts the poster above who says it's got bad customer service. My experience has almost always been good, from store staff to managers to their online customer services, etc.

    While I didn't like the reports of what Browett was said to have been doing with staffing policies in Apple's stores, that could quite reasonably be put down to the 'new boy' not quite getting it in the first months of his job and having the guts to correct himself rather than claiming that he was either right or that there was no problem at all.

    So far as I can tell, customer experience at Apple stores (those which I frequent at least) is still second to none. New customer-friendly services have been introduced, including more convenient ways to pay/deal with transactions - for both customers and staff alike including new credit card terminals, iTunes account integration, etc. Transactions now take less time and require less waiting around while the Apple staff person scurries around looking for bits of paper. The backoffice Apple systems still remember who you are when you go into any Apple shop, which is excellent and if you have a business account, like I do, you still get good service and, importantly, discounts!

    I think Apple fans - of which I am one - are very very loyal. Indeed I think it's that loyalty that means that they pay very close attention to anything that threatens to upset the apple cart (pun intended!) at the company they love to buy stuff from. When it looks that someone might be a threat they come out guns blazing, but in this case I think that reaction is premature. So far all we've had is one small mis-step and an immediate row-back. Nothing else whatsoever seems to have gone wrong and I think it's rather unfair to heap so much criticism on Browett at this juncture. I'll keep an open mind, based on his corporate background apparently not matching that of Apple, but then is there any other corporate background that can match Apple? Probably not, considering there IS only one Apple after all...
  21. macrumors 6502a

    In the UK at least we have already seen what his style of management produces. He ruined Dixons, a large electrical retail chain in the UK, with his blind cost cutting crap with focus on nothing but cost and as we can see he is now trying to do the same with Apple retail. I have to admit that given his past I was shocked that Apple hired him at all but I thought give him a chance maybe he is more than a one trick pony. Well now it's becoming clear that he is not and giving him bonuses despite the crap he has pulled recently just beggars belief. There have been no new improvements since he got the job that I am aware of and have been a lot of errors made like laying off staff and having to rehire them. Not the sort of thing that should be rewarded and a similar pattern that tuned Dixons from a reasonable pace to shop into total crap.
  22. macrumors member

    I can see that there is an attitude pervading this forum (and others) these days whereby anyone who is paid a very large salary is to be derided, found suspicious or automatically worthy of disdain.

    Yet for years high salaries were to be admired and aimed for. We all wanted to be that good.

    By constantly belittling and scorning those who earn more than we do, the groundswell of opinion will end up forcing companies, for the benefit of nothing more than PR, to reduce the remuneration of the senior management who chart the course of a multi-$billion company to such an extent that nobody qualified will ever want to work in such a role for such little compensation.

    All this carping and criticism about directors' pay risks, eventually, shooting the goose that lays the golden egg because without these skilled people in such critical roles, successful companies will end up mismanaged by people who'll do it on the cheap and then others, from elsewhere in the world, where it isn't seen as a sin to earn a big salary, will come along, snap up the now failing company, asset strip it and send it to the grave.

    Is that really what people want? Because it's what will happen, eventually, if good executives aren't allowed to earn good money in our society.
  23. macrumors 6502a

    For years average salary to CEO salary ratios were nowhere near as extreme as they are today. In mid-60s America, CEO salaries were a hefty 18 times higher than the average. Now they are 237 times higher and at some of the biggest companies far higher than this.

    Of course, in the 1960s there were huge problems as CEOs had to be dragged from bed each morning kicking and screaming, forced to work for such meagre gruel like a slave.

    'How can I work for the pay of a mere 18 average men?' they would say.
  24. macrumors regular

    You must not be from the UK. If you were you'd see what a crap job this guy has done with the Dixons Group chain of stores. Old and stale store fronts, overpriced uncompetitive pricing, rude and unknowledgeable staff. If this is the same direction he's taking Apple then everyone should be worried.
  25. macrumors 6502a

    I don't think this is true, to a large extent you have people from the UK relaying what a total mess this guy made of the UKs largest electrical retail group Dixons. Under his inept stewardship it went from good to useless in a very short space of time. Shops became shabby with ignorant clueless staff and prices increased. For us maybe we just see this clown being rewarded by Apple as adding insult to injury. I have no problem with Apple rewarding talent and good work, there are a lot of both of these things at Apple, but this guy, we just can't see why.

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