Apple shareholders want Jobs succession plan

An influential US investor advisory firm has thrown its weight behind a shareholder proposal to require Apple to disclose a succession plan for chief executive Steve Jobs.

Apple shareholders want Jobs succession plan

The proposal – backed by Institutional Shareholder Services (ISS), which operates a proxy voting service – has been submitted by the Central Laborers’ Pension Fund.

Last month, Apple CEO Jobs stepped away from the company on medical leave for an undisclosed condition.

Chief operating officer Tim Cook is now overseeing day-to-day operations, but shareholders want a more formal plan for what happens if Jobs does not return to work.

“ISS believes that shareholders would benefit by having a report on the company’s succession plans disclosed annually,” ISS said, according to a release from the Laborers’ International Union of North America.

“Such a report would enable shareholders to judge the board on its readiness and willingness to meet the demands of succession planning based on the circumstances at that time.”

An Apple spokesman was not immediately available for comment, but the company is recommending its shareholders vote against the proposal at the company’s annual meeting on 23 February.

In a regulatory filing last month, Apple said it had a “comprehensive succession plan” but divulging such a plan would give its rivals an unfair advantage, undermine its efforts to recruit and retain executives, and constrain its board.

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