Steve Jobs is officially back at work, according to Apple PR. Even though he had a liver transplant earlier this year, a detail which was leaked to the Wall Street Journal and conveniently reported on a Friday night after the markets had closed. Last week, Jobs was spotted back on Apple’s campus and was even quoted in a press release! Today, Apple is hammering home the message that Jobs is back on the job, telling multiple news organizations from ABC News to Bloomberg to the New York Times to Reuters the exact same canned quote (sometimes attributed to spokesman Steve Dowling, sometimes not).
Steve is back to work, Jobs is at Apple a few days a week and working at home the remaining days. We are very glad to have him back.
Hopefully, he is working from home more than from the office until he is fully recovered. But what is all of this messaging about? When Jobs took his medical leave of absence in January, he said he would return by June 30. This is Apple’s way of telling investors that he kept to that deadline despite the seriousness of his operation. The official story is that he is back, even if only part-time. But honestly, if he took another six months, would anyone blame him?
Apple’s stock has always been tied closely to Steve Jobs, but if the past six months have taught investors anything it is that the company’s fortunes are tied even closer to its products. And Apple’s products are on fire right now. Over the past six months, the stock is up 82 percent.