Too Big to Boycott: Why Apple Won’t Go Under
The recent buzz of media footage covering poor working conditions in Chinese factories, especially those constructing Apple products and parts, has given rise to the question, ‘Should we boycott Apple products?’ But, can Apple be boycotted? And while it might possibly be the ethical thing to do, is it a logical or responsible thing to do?
Apple Inc. is a corporation that has grown exponentially over the last few years. For example, in the fiscal period between 2011 and 2012, Apples stock went up an astounding 34.3% with a 12.5% growth in the last 3 months alone. Apple Inc. boasts a liquid cash asset stock of around 81.5 billion which places it as one of the largest funded corporations in the world and bigger than Nokia, RIM and Motorola combined. Their 81.5 billion in assets is also enough to keep the company afloat through an estimated 7 years or more of boycotting their products!
Apple is also worth about 380 billion on the stock market which means it is worth more than every penny in Euro Zone banks (340 billion), more than Singapore (projected 318 billion) and more than the entire value of the New York Federal Gold Reserve (350 billion).
Apple also employs more than 30 companies on the NASDAQ including Samsung which is one of the largest companies in the world according to Fortune Magazine’s 2011 500 list. Apple also works with a variety of industries including Skyworks Solutions, Texas Instruments, Foxconn, ARMH –which provides A5 processors – and multiple international companies in Great Britain, Germany and China. Considering that Apple spent nearly 1 billion (900 million) with these companies in 2011 alone, boycotting Apple might cause more problems than it would fix.
For example, while inhumane working conditions in factories such as Foxconn are common knowledge, the fact that these conditions are rampant throughout many of China’s factories isn’t quite so well known.
Currently, Apple is actively working to improve working conditions and has released plans of submitting its factories to FLA inspections in 2012. While boycotting Apple holds the romantic notions of fighting a large corporation, in this instance, it is neither feasible nor necessary.
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