Cook revealed that the move was part of a greater strategy already put in place. He said as part of a plan to buy back $60 million of its own shares, Apple has purchased more than $40 million worth over the past 12 months.
The CEO said that further details on Apple's buyback plan will be available later this year in March or April. “It means that we are betting on Apple. It means that we are really confident on what we are doing and what we plan to do,” said Cook to WSJ. “We’re not just saying that. We’re showing that with our actions.”
Major investor Carl Icahn has been pressuring Apple to move on a buy back plan for a while now, just last month he upped his holdings buy another $1 billion for a total of $3.6 billion hoping to motivate Apple's buy back program along.
Cook went on to say that Apple is focused on "the long-term interest of the shareholders, not for the short-term shareholder, not for the day trader." When asked about possible acquisitions, Cook was adamant in saying that Apple has "looked at big companies" and that it has "no problem spending ten figures for the right company, for the right fit that’s in the best interest of Apple in the long-term.” We also learned that Apple has picked up 21 companies over the last 15 months based on figures right from Cook, but none that we know of in the ten figure range.