Steve Jobs quits as Apple CEO

steve-jobs-getty.jpg Steve Jobs, Apple's co-founder and CEO announced on Wednesday (Aug. 24) that he's resigning effective immediately.

In a statement, Jobs says, "I have always said if there ever came a day when I could no longer meet my duties and expectations as Apple's CEO, I would be the first to let you know. Unfortunately, that day has come."

Apple's COO, Tim Cook will take over the reigns as CEO of the Silicon Valley-based firm. Cook led the computer firm while Jobs was out earlier in 2011.

Jobs, 56, has taken multiple medical leaves in recent years was diagnosed with a rare form of pancreatic cancer in 2004.

This was Jobs' second tenure running the firm. He headed up Apple from its founding until his ousting in 1985. He rejoined the firm in 1997 leading a turn around with the iMac, iPod, iPhone, iTunes and iPad.

In recent years, Apple has seen dramatic success in terms of sales and stock performance. While their main competitor Microsoft has seen their stock remain relatively static over the last 10 years, Apple's has shot from $7/share in 2001 to $375/share as of Wednesday (Aug. 24).

Jobs had his share of failures with the company including the Lisa, Newton and Cube. But it was his quest for elegant design and ease of use that ultimately helped the computer maker thrive.

In early August, Apple became the richest company in the world based on market cap, taking the title from ExxonMobil.

Jobs was also a driving force behind Pixar, the animation studio responsible for "Finding Nemo" and the "Toy Story" series among others. The firm was bought by Disney in 2006, and Jobs took a position on Disney's Board of Directors.

According to a Disney spokesperson, Jobs will remain on Disney's board.

Apple stock AAPL is down more than $19 in after hours trading to $357.
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