Former Retail Store Manager Steve Cano to Succeed Ron Johnson as Apple Retail Chief? [Updated]

Yesterday, we noted that Apple senior vice president for retail Ron Johnson had been removed from Apple's list of senior executives, in line with his previously-announced departure to become CEO of department store chain J.C. Penney. The transition occurred with no announcement from Apple regarding Johnson's successor.

cano johnson osaka
Steve Cano (left) and Ron Johnson (right) at 2004 grand opening of Shinsaibashi store in Osaka, Japan (Source: ifoAppleStore)

Cult of Mac now reports that Steve Cano has been elevated to the position of senior vice president for retail, heading up the successful division as part of the executive leadership team.

Apple’s new retail boss boss isn’t just some suit, though. He’s one of the first retail employees Apple ever hired, a California surfer dude who has climbed from the sales floor to the very top rung of Apple management.

It’s a real rags-to-riches story that should be inspiration to every stressed out Apple Store sales associate or overworked Genius: your work can be noticed, and you too can go to the very top.

According to our source, Apple is replacing Johnson with his long-time lieutenant, Steve Cano.

According to the report, Cano began his career at Apple ten years ago as manager of the Palo Alto retail store, later moving to open the SoHo store in New York City. Consistent with previous reports of Apple looking for a candidate with international retail experience, Cano has spent the last seven years working on Apple's international retail efforts, first in Japan as manager of the Ginza store in Tokyo and then as regional director there. Cano then moved to London, where he has been serving as senior director of international retail for the last several years.

Update: Apple has issued a brief statement to Cult of Mac indicating that the search for Johnson's successor is still continuing.

Apple has gotten back to us a statement, reading: “The search for a replacement for Ron Johnson continues, and Apple has nothing to announce about this subject at this time.”

Top Rated Comments

anotonin Avatar
142 months ago
Why are all Apple employees deeply unattractive people when their products are so beautiful?

Strange.

Aw, come on. Beauty is subjective.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
benmrii Avatar
142 months ago
I had the pleasure of working with Steve Cano at SoHo and can say that he is a great person and tremendous manager. The best part is what this quote makes me think of:
It's a real rags-to-riches story that should be inspiration to every stressed out Apple Store sales associate or overworked Genius: your work can be noticed, and you too can go to the very top.
Not only is that true for him, he makes it true for everyone on his team. He always encouraged and recognized hard work and strong employees, and he did so in two ways that have become rare in the workplace: example and trust. His example through commitment and hard work made it clear that he would never expect anyone to do something that he wasn't willing to do himself. And the trust he put in his employees was nothing short of inspirational.

If you will permit me the indulgence of one memory: to this day I remember a customer service issue at the Bar that escalated to the point of Steve joining the conversation. Contrary to what many managers would do in that situation to placate a customer, he did not belittle me or dismiss my recommendations, but instead explained to the customer that, as General Manager, he had put his trust in me for such situations, and that he was going to support my recommendation. That is not the easy way out that most would take. That is the kind of example and message that motivates an employee to excellence.

Trust me: this is a man anyone would be fortunate to work for. And if this little snippet has done anything, I hope it is a worthwhile thank you and congratulations to Steve. Well deserved!
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
the8thark Avatar
142 months ago
I think the article is mis-leading or confusing it's facts. They tout him as an example of how you can rise to the top from a sales associate, then state that he STARTED as a manager of a store.

Not the same thing, and getting from "unnoticed sales monkey" to "manager" is quite a fight in the jungle, IMHO.

This is very true.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
AgingGeek Avatar
142 months ago
I think the article is mis-leading or confusing it's facts. They tout him as an example of how you can rise to the top from a sales associate, then state that he STARTED as a manager of a store.

Not the same thing, and getting from "unnoticed sales monkey" to "manager" is quite a fight in the jungle, IMHO.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
gmcalpin Avatar
142 months ago
Except the StarTAC was black or charcoal, not silver.

It came in silver, too: http://www.retrofones.com/silver-130-p-58.html
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
iekozz Avatar
142 months ago
What kind of phone is Ron using in the picture?
The picture is from 2004, three years before the public introduction of the iPhone.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

AirPods Max 2022 Colors

Ten Things AirPods Pro 2 Tell Us About AirPods Max 2

Saturday September 24, 2022 1:00 am PDT by
Upon the release of the second-generation AirPods Pro, the AirPods Max became the oldest current-generation AirPods product still in Apple's lineup. Introducing several new features like Adaptive Transparency and the H2 chip, the second-generation AirPods Pro may provide some of the best indications yet of what to expect from the second-generation AirPods Max. Almost two years later, rumors...
apple watch series 7 aluminum colors yellowbg

Don't Want the Apple Watch Ultra or Series 8? Amazon Has Record Low Prices on Series 7 Models This Week

Friday September 23, 2022 6:56 am PDT by
The Apple Watch Series 8 and Apple Watch Ultra are now available to purchase, but if you aren't interested in these updates you can save a lot of money on Series 7 models right now on Amazon. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with Amazon. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment, which helps us keep the site running. The best deals are on cellular...
iOS 16

Apple Releases iOS 16.0.2 With Bug Fixes for iPhone 14 Pro Camera Vibration, Copy/Paste Issue and More

Thursday September 22, 2022 1:04 pm PDT by
Apple today released iOS 16.0.2, addressing a number of bugs that iPhone 14 owners have been experiencing since the new devices launched. iOS 16.0.2 comes two weeks after the launch of iOS 16, and it follows iOS 16.0.1, an update made available to iPhone 14 owners on launch day. The update is available for all iPhones that are capable of running iOS 16. The iOS 16.0.2 update can be...
14 vs 16 inch mbp m2 pro and max feature 1

New 14-Inch and 16-Inch MacBook Pros Reportedly Launching Later This Year

Friday September 23, 2022 7:08 am PDT by
Apple plans to release new MacBook Pro models in the fourth quarter of 2022, according to supply chain publication DigiTimes. The report does not mention specific models, but it very likely refers to the next-generation 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pros given that the 13-inch model was already updated earlier this year. There has been uncertainty surrounding the timing of new 14-inch and...
Tim Cook Apple Event

Gurman: New iPads and Macs May Be Announced Through Press Releases, No October Event

Sunday September 25, 2022 6:50 am PDT by
Apple may decide to release its remaining products for 2022, which include updated iPad Pro, Mac mini, and 14-inch and 16-inch MacBook Pro models, through press releases on its website rather than a digital event, according to Bloomberg's Mark Gurman. In his latest Power On newsletter, Gurman said that Apple is currently "likely to release its remaining 2022 products via press releases,...
Dynamic Island For Android Users Feature

Android App Copying iPhone 14 Pro's Dynamic Island Released on Play Store

Thursday September 22, 2022 7:57 am PDT by
A copycat version of the iPhone 14 Pro's Dynamic Island has arrived on Android's Google Play Store in the form of an app called "dynamicSpot." The app, still in beta, offers customers several different experiences at the top of their smartphones. In its current form, dynamicSpot offers playback control for songs, timers, battery status, and more features coming soon, according to the app's...
AirPods Pro Second Generation 2 Pairing Feature 1

AirPods Pro 2 Engravings Appear in iOS During Pairing and Connecting

Friday September 23, 2022 9:40 am PDT by
Customers who personalize their second-generation AirPods Pro charging case with an engraving will now have that engraving reflected directly on iOS as they pair and connect their AirPods Pro. Apple allows customers to personalize their AirPods Pro charging case with a special engraving that can include select emojis and Memojis. Unlike before, starting with the second-generation AirPods...
Apple Watch 6 New Features Feature 2

Six New Apple Watch Features Coming Later This Year

Friday September 23, 2022 8:12 am PDT by
With new Apple Watch Ultra and Series 8 models now in the hands of customers, Apple has brought a host of smart new features to many people's wrists. But there's more to come. Apple has a handful of additional features in store for Apple Watch Series 8 and Apple Watch Ultra owners before the year's end, and some of them are watchOS 9 functions, which means they will even work on older Apple ...
new airpods pro ear tips

Apple Explains Why Second-Generation AirPods Pro Ear Tips Are Incompatible With Original AirPods Pro

Thursday September 22, 2022 3:12 pm PDT by
Apple today explained why the new silicone ear tips for the second-generation AirPods Pro are not officially compatible with the original AirPods Pro. In an updated support document, Apple said the original AirPods Pro ear tips have "noticeably denser mesh" than the second-generation ear tips. Apple did not provide any additional details, but the mesh density could result in acoustical...