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Apple Inc: Setting New Inventory Management Standards

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This case study was compiled from published sources, and is intended to be used as a basis for class discussion. It is not intended to illustrate either effective or ineffective handling of a management situation. Nor is it a primary information source.

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Case Details:


Case Code : FINC079 Flectronic Format: Rs.400;
courier (within India):25 Extra
Business Strategy | Case Study in Management, Operations, Strategies, Business Strategy, Case Studies

Themes: Inventory Management / Manage the Fund Internally on Revenue Growth

Case Length : 17 Pages
Period : 1993-2011
Pub. Date : 2012
Teaching Note : Available
Organization : Apple Inc.
Industry : Computer and Technology Industry
Countries : India,US,Global


Apple Inc, one of the most innovative companies in the world not only sells some of the most popular Gadgets of the century but also manages its inventory well. The company worked on new inventory management strategies which became a benchmark in the electronic industry.

The benchmarks not only minimized inventory costs but also at the same time helped it smoothly sail through the big ticket product launches without giving scope to its competitors, to catch up. The case not only covers the inventory management techniques at Apple but also provide the basis for calculating the internal fund requirement of the company based on the projection on sales.


The case provides the students with an opportunity to critically analyze Apple’s strategy of working capital management. It provides them with the opportunity to forecast the internal funding requirements for expected growth in revenue by 40% in the financial year 2012 (Though the analyst had predicted 50% growth in the case the author assumed the growth rate to be 40%).

The case is structured to achieve the following teaching objectives:

  • To understand the Strategies implemented by the Apple Inc to effectively manage inventory.
  • To understand the internal funding requirement with the projection of sales for the future periods.
  • Apple drove the competitive advantages against its competitors after managing the working capital efficiently.
  • Contents:

      Page No.
    Introduction 1
    Apple Inc. 1
    Reentry of Jobs 2
    The Turnaround 3
    Inventory Management from 1995 to 1997 3
    Inventory Management from 1998 to 2011 4
    Road Ahead 5
    Exhibits 6


    Apple, Steve Jobs, Timothy Cook, Inventory management, Turnaround, Working capital , Day Sale Inventory (DSI), Day Sale Outstanding (DSO), Day Purchase Outstanding (DPO), Internal Fund Management, Product line Accumulated, Dell, Hewlett-Packard, Intel, Cash Conversion Cycle (CCC), Internal Fund Requirement, Repurchase of Stock

    Introduction - Next Page>>

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