Back in late February, Morgan Stanley analyst Kathryn Huberty cited Apple (AAPL) CEO Steve Jobs’ plane travel as a reason to be excited about Apple and its stock.
How does Huberty know Apple is working on lots of new toys? …Apple boss Steve Jobs is flying more.
Apple spent $550,000 on Jobs’ aeroplane expenses — we assume it’s on the Gulfstream V he made the company give him in 2000 — during the December quarter. That’s three times the average over the previous six quarters. Jobs is “integral to negotiations with international carriers and supply chain partners,” she notes. So when Steve’s flying, Apple’s new-gadget gears are cranking.
In the March quarter, however, Jobs’ plane expenses dove to $30,000, down 95% quarter-over-quarter and down 92% year-over-year, according to a SEC filing. Yet in the last week, Apple closed some big international deals: Wireless carriers Vodafone (VOD), America Movil (AMX), and Telecom Italia announced plans to start selling the iPhone in more than 24 countries “later this year.”
- Either Jobs did all his flying for these deals during the December quarter,
- or the Vodafone, Telecom Italia, and America Movil guys flew to Cupertino,
- or they didn’t start working on these deals until April 1,
- or Jobs is flying United (UAUA) on business,
- or the Apple plane reimbursement numbers mean nothing at all!
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