Tim Cook Reaches Five Years as Apple CEO, Unlocks Over $100 Million in Bonuses

cook_heroToday marks the fifth anniversary since Tim Cook was named Apple CEO on August 24, 2011, the same day that late co-founder Steve Jobs stepped down as chief executive for the final time and recommended the board of directors appoint Cook as his permanent successor.

Upon reaching the five-year mark, Cook has today unlocked previously awarded stock bonuses currently worth over $100 million. The bonuses are tied to both his tenure and Apple's performance under his leadership, including its total shareholder return relative to the S&P 500 index.

Cook's bonus includes 700,000 tenure-based restricted stock units that vested today as part of a larger compensation package of over 4.7 million shares awarded on August 24, 2011, in addition to his first of six annual installments of 280,000 tenure-based restricted stock units that vested today. The combined 980,000 shares are valued at nearly $106.7 million based on AAPL's closing price of $108.85 on Tuesday.

Cook's bonus could be even higher if Apple's total shareholder return is in the middle third or top third relative to other companies in the S&P 500 from August 25, 2013 through August 24, 2016. He will receive another 140,000 RSUs for middle third performance, or 280,000 RSUs for top third performance. AAPL has risen around 52% since August 25, 2013, while the S&P 500 has risen around 32% in the same time period, making at least a middle third finish a strong possibility.

A restricted stock unit, or RSU, is a form of compensation valued in terms of company stock, but the stock is not issued at the time of the grant. Instead, the recipient gets shares of stock at a later date, generally only if they are still employed by the company. Cook personally requested that his award be modified to adhere to a more performance-based compensation system in 2013. Another 700,000 of his RSUs are scheduled to vest on August 24, 2021, plus 280,000 RSUs each August 24 through 2021.

Cook's net worth, assuming he remains with the company through August 24, 2021 and meets performance targets, is estimated to be over $500 million based on his current stock options and RSUs awarded. He has previously pledged to donate the vast majority of his wealth, including stock bonuses like these, to charities in his lifetime. In May 2015, for example, Cook donated approximately 50,000 shares of Apple stock, then worth approximately $6.5 million, to undisclosed charities.

Cook has overseen the launch of the Apple Watch, MacBook Pro with Retina display, ultra-thin 12-inch MacBook, iPad Pro, several iPhone and iPad models, Apple Maps, Apple Music, Apple Pay, Siri, and many other products and services since taking over the reigns in 2011. Apple became the world's most valuable company in 2012 under his leadership, and it continues to hold that title today. Apple stock has risen over 132% since Cook was appointed as CEO five years ago.

Update: Cook has netted another 280,000 shares of Apple stock, as the company returned 61% during the past three years, placing it in the top-performing third of the S&P 500 index, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The additional shares were valued at approximately $30 million based on AAPL's closing price of $108.03 on Wednesday.

Tags: Tim Cook, AAPL

Top Rated Comments

chriscrowlee Avatar
78 months ago
And he's done a great job, despite what people have to say around these parts. :) Glad he's on board.
Mac holds less marketshare than ever in history.
iOS sinks to record low marketshare.
iPhone now makes up less marketshare than ever.
iPhone 7 looks like iPhone 6S, and iPhone 6S looks like iPhone 6.
MacBook Pro Line goes nearly 5 years and still no update.
iPad sales lagging industry.

Not a resume I'd want... sure Apple is profitable... but has been stagnant for a while in product. And the reason the company is successful is the coat-tails they're still riding from past successes.

Innovation is the name of the game, and without it, it's a boring and unsuccessful path when it comes to technology.
Score: 111 Votes (Like | Disagree)
jsmith189 Avatar
78 months ago
And he's done a great job, despite what people have to say around these parts. :) Glad he's on board.
Score: 56 Votes (Like | Disagree)
keysofanxiety Avatar
78 months ago

iPhone now makes up less marketshare than ever.
And the most sales of any one model.


iPhone 6S looks like iPhone 6.
That's why it's called the 6S. Like the 3GS looked like the 3G. 4S looked like the 4. 5S looked like the 5.


MacBook Pro Line goes nearly 5 years and still no update.
Just the non-Retina. This shouldn't come as any great surprise. You have to properly dig it out from the website as well.


iPad sales lagging industry.
Still more sales than any other tablet. Partership with IBM will vastly improve long term sales & functionality.


Innovation is the name of the game, and without it, it's a boring and unsuccessful path when it comes to technology.
You class 'innovation' as being synonymous with something that looks completely different. The Mac line has had more innovation in the last 5 years than it had from 2007-2011. While you're complaining, everybody else continues to use their Macs for their livelihood, and are simply waiting for a spec bump if they feel the need to upgrade.
Score: 46 Votes (Like | Disagree)
VAGDesign Avatar
78 months ago
Would be nice instead of bonuses to deliver new Mac Pros, new Displays and Pro software... just saying.
Score: 33 Votes (Like | Disagree)
otternonsense Avatar
78 months ago
Those news deserve a special edition watchband, no?
Score: 31 Votes (Like | Disagree)
MH01 Avatar
78 months ago
hmmmm product line stagnates, iPhone sales drop and Tim gets $100 million bonus.... There lies the problem. He can do very little and score a huge bonus .

Though well done Tim, you did not rock the boat and still managed to let the cogs turn over. Well played.
Score: 30 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Popular Stories

iPhone 14 Dummies 1 Feature

Everything Rumored for Apple's September Event: iPhone 14, Apple Watch Pro and More

Friday August 12, 2022 2:34 pm PDT by
There's just about a month to go until Apple holds its annual September event focusing on new iPhone and Apple Watch models. We thought we'd take a quick look at everything that's rumored for Apple's September event to give MacRumors readers a rundown on what to expect when the first fall event rolls around. iPhone 14 The iPhone 14 can probably be described more as an "iPhone 13S" because...
airpods pro black background

AirPods Pro 2: Five New Features and Improvements to Expect

Sunday August 14, 2022 3:28 pm PDT by
Apple's second-generation AirPods Pro are finally nearing launch, with a release expected later this year. If you are considering upgrading to the new AirPods Pro once they are released, keep reading for a list of five new features to expect. In addition to all-new features, the second-generation AirPods Pro will likely adopt some features added to the standard AirPods last year. H2 Chip ...
z fold 4 1

Hands-On With Samsung's Latest Foldable Smartphones, the Galaxy Z Fold and Z Flip

Friday August 12, 2022 12:46 pm PDT by
Samsung this week launched its fourth-generation foldable devices, the $1,000 Galaxy Z Flip and the $1,800 Galaxy Z Fold. Though there's no sign of a comparable Apple foldable device on the horizon, rumors suggest prototypes are in the works, so we thought we'd take a look at Samsung's newest smartphones to see what Apple needs to measure up to when a foldable iPhone does come out. Subscribe ...
top stories 13aug2022

Top Stories: New Battery Percentage Icon in iOS 16, USB-C AirPods Rumor, and More

Saturday August 13, 2022 6:00 am PDT by
This week brought some shocking news for iOS 16 beta testers, with Apple bringing back the iPhone battery percentage to the status bar after a number of years. Other news and rumors this week included word that Apple has started recording portions of its media event planned for next month to introduce the iPhone 14 and Apple Watch Series 8, claims about iPhone 14 Pro pricing and Apple's...
iCloud General Feature

Apple Remains Silent About Plans to Detect Known CSAM Stored in iCloud Photos

Saturday August 13, 2022 1:52 pm PDT by
It has now been over a year since Apple announced plans for three new child safety features, including a system to detect known Child Sexual Abuse Material (CSAM) images stored in iCloud Photos, an option to blur sexually explicit photos in the Messages app, and child exploitation resources for Siri. The latter two features are now available, but Apple remains silent about its plans for the CSAM...
apple watch se

Apple Watch SE vs. Apple Watch Series 8: New Features to Expect If You've Waited to Upgrade

Monday August 15, 2022 2:44 am PDT by
The Apple Watch SE was announced in September 2020 and has been a popular Apple Watch model for customers looking for their first smartwatch or an affordable Apple Watch. Apple Watch SE customers may be wondering, however, what's in store for them with the upcoming Apple Watch Series 8 and what new features they can expect. Continue reading to find out. Apple Watch SE vs. Apple Watch Series ...