In article <tdl.com>,
Phil Stripling <zzn.com> wrote:
I think you're confusing a couple of things which occurred at the same
time. At the summer Macworld in 1997 there were a couple of relevant
announcements. One was that MS would buy $150 million of Apple's stock.
The other was a five-year agreement to continue developing MS Office for
Macs. Both were in exchange for Apple dropping patent-infringement
claims against MS.
The five-year agreement expired, but as far as I can tell MS has not
sold its stock.
That said, avoiding Apple because it's "owned in part by Microsoft" is
idiotic, regardless of how one feels about MS.
There are a couple of details worth noting. One is that MS bought
non-voting stock, meaning that unlike other stockholders, they don't get
any direct control over what Apple chooses to do. (Obviously MS may try
to influcence Apple through typical business methods, but they don't get
the direct control that being a stockholder normally implies). The
investment serves mainly to give MS some financial interest in Apple's
continued success rather than giving them direct influence.
The other thing is that MS's share of Apple is a small percentage.
Looking at Apple's stock history-- the day the deal was announced,
August 6 1997, Apple closed at $13.15. As of right now Apple's at
$21.46. So assuming MS just bought and held (since I have no reason to
suspect otherwise), their $150 million is worth something like $245
million now. But Apple's market cap is $7.779 billion, so MS owns
around 3% of stock.
See <http://news.com.com/2100-1001-202143.html?legacy=cnet> for a 1997
story on the initial investment.
Tom "Tom" Harrington
Macaroni, Automated System Maintenance for Mac OS X.
Version 1.4: Best cleanup yet, gets files other tools miss.