Apple CEO Tim Cook waves to open the door of the newly renovated Apple Store on Fifth Avenue on September 20, 2019 in New York City. (Photo by Kena Betancur / AFP) (Photo credit should read KENA BETANCUR / AFP via Getty Images)

KENA BETANCUR | AFP | Getty Images

Apple on Tuesday, shareholders voted to approve Apple executive compensation, including a set of equity announced last year that could earn CEO Tim Cook 1 million new shares, if the company hits certain targets.

The vote was non-binding and advisory. Apple shareholders also rejected a shareholder proposal opposed by Apple that would require the company to reduce executive pay relative to the median pay of Apple employees.

The votes, which were expected, are another sign that Apple shareholders are happy with Apple’s management and CEO. Apple, valued at over $ 2.1 trillion, recently reported a quarter with $ 114.4 billion in revenue and sales growth in each product category, even during a pandemic year.

Apple’s board of directors has strongly backed Cook’s compensation package in a case, citing an 867% shareholder return, including dividends, since he took over as CEO of Apple in 2011 until September 2020.

Cook also said Apple plans to increase the company’s dividend. Dividends have totaled more than $ 14 billion in the past four quarters, Cook said. The company paid a dividend of $ 0.205 per share during the last two quarters.

The success of Covid-19 and Apple as a business during a pandemic year was the major theme of Cook’s remarks to shareholders. Last year, Cook said the pandemic was the most difficult environment Apple had ever faced.

“A year later you have to take a break and say wow,” Cook said.

Cook said in a question-and-answer session that Apple has adapted well to remote working – Apple employees have been working from home since March – that the company “still can’t wait until we can. meet at the office again, “suggesting that Apple will remain focused on offices after the pandemic, compared to competing tech companies who have announced plans to move to a remote-working model.

Cook said one of the perks of working from an office is the chance interactions between employees.

Cook also spoke about Apple’s acquisition strategy. Cook said Apple has acquired 100 companies in the past 6 years. Ultimately, Apple acquires a business every 3-4 weeks, Cook said, primarily geared towards acquiring technology and talent.

In response to a shareholder question on whether Apple faces regulatory challenges over its control of the iPhone App Store, Cook said Apple does not have a monopoly. “While the review is always fair, such accusations fall apart after a reasonable examination of the facts,” Cook said.

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