Ousted Apple CEO Calls for ‘Creative Leap’

Apple is in need of a “creative leap.” That’s according to former Apple CEO John Sculley.

With shares of Apple trending consistently lower over the past five months, calls are mounting for Apple to get back to what it does best – innovate at a dazzling pace.

In an exclusive interview with CNBC on Thursday, ex-CEO Sculley admits that Apple needs to catch a creative wave.

“We’re in a period now where there’s kind of a lull in innovation so I wouldn’t expect to see a creative leap from Apple for maybe a few years,” said Sculley, who was CEO from 1983 until his forced departure in 1993. “Now is the fast follower evolution decade – it’s a time where we’re not at a big breakthrough point in time, but where fast followers excel – so Samsung, an excellent fast follower is doing really well.”

When asked about the death of Steve Jobs and whether his passing killed Apple’s creative spirit, Sculley didn’t seem too concerned.

“Apple has an outstanding management team – (CEO) Tim Cook is a great leader,” Sculley says. “[But] Tim Cook is not a product person, he’s a supply chain expert- probably the best in the world – but he has a great product person by his side and that’s Johnny Ives. I think the leadership team at apple is impressive.”

According to Sculley, however, Apple will only remain competitive in “the fast follower evolution decade” by escalating its focus on emerging markets like China and India, where Android is dramatically outpacing iOS in device sales with each passing quarter.

“In Indonesia, you can buy smartphones for around $120, Apple sells a smartphone for $800,” he said.