Apple CFO Peter Oppenheimer to retire in September

Oppenheimer will be succeeded by Luca Maestri

Financial trends and news by Faith Merino
March 4, 2014
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After 18 years on the job, Apple CFO Peter Oppenheimer is retiring, Apple announced Tuesday. Oppenheimer will bow out in September 2014, at which point he’ll be replaced by Apple’s VP of finance and corporate controller Luca Maestri, who joined the company in March 2013.

The announcement was made just one day after Oppenheimer revealed that he will be joining the board of directors at Goldman Sachs.

“I love Apple and the people I have had the privilege to work with and after 18 years here, it is time for me to take time for myself and my family,” said Oppenheimer, in a statement. “For quite some time, I have wanted to live on the central coast of California and get more involved at Cal Poly, my alma mater; spend more time with my wife and sons; travel to interesting parts of the world; and something I have wanted to do for years— finish the requirements for my pilot’s license.”

Oppenheimer definitely wasn’t cruising on autopilot at Apple. He joined the company in 1996 as controller for the Americas. The next year, he was promoted to VP and worldwide sales controller. From there, he climbed the ranks to corporate controller before being named CFO in 2004—just three years before Apple debuted the very first iPhone. During his tenure as CFO, Apple’s annual revenue went from $8 billion to $171 billion. This time in 2004, Apple shares were hovering around $12-$13. Today they’re trading at $531—an increase of 4,348%.

Yeah, I’d want to go spend some time at the beach after that, too.

Oppenheimer’s replacement, Luca Maestri, has likely been groomed for the spot since the day he joined the company last year. Maestri was previously CFO of Nokia Siemens Networks and Xerox. Prior to that, he was CFO of GM’s operations in Europe.

“In our view, Mr. Oppenheimer leaves behind a strong financial management infrastructure. We do not think the announcement is a surprise. When Mr. Maestri left Xerox to join Apple, we think it was Mr. Maestri's position to lose as the heir apparent. As a result, we expect a smooth transition and little disruption to the operating model,” wrote JP Morgan analyst Mark Moskowitz in a research note.

“When we were recruiting for a corporate controller, we met Luca and knew he would become Peter’s successor,” said Apple CEO Tim Cook, in a statement. “His contributions to Apple have already been significant in his time with us and he has quickly gained respect from his colleagues throughout the company.” 


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