Tony Blevins, Apple’s vice president of procurement, is set to depart the company after he made a crude comment about his profession in a recent TikTok video, reports Bloomberg.
Blevins was in a video by TikTok creator Daniel Mac, who was doing a series on the jobs of people he spotted with expensive cars. After seeing Blevins in an expensive Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren, Mac asked Blevins what he does for a living, and Blevins had a lewd response. From Bloomberg:
When asked what he does for a living, Blevins said, “I have rich cars, play golf and fondle big-breasted women, but I take weekends and major holidays off.” He also touted that he has a “hell of a dental plan.” […]
The TikTok video was taken at a car show that Blevins attended last month in Pebble Beach, California. His remarks in the 25-second clip reference a line from the 1981 movie Arthur, where main character Arthur Bach describes his own career: “I race cars, play tennis and fondle women, but I have weekends off and I am my own boss.”
Blevins is in fact a high-ranking executive at Apple, and as Apple’s vice president of procurement, his job was to work with suppliers and Apple partners. He was part of the team that inked a deal with Globalstar for Apple’s iPhone 14 satellite functionality, and he has a reputation for aggressively negotiating with Apple suppliers to bring down Apple’s costs.
In a 2020 profile, The Wall Street Journal said that Blevins had earned the nickname “the Blevinator” within Apple because of his tough stance on negotiations. Blevins was said to be the one encouraging Apple suppliers to deprive Qualcomm of royalty payments during the Qualcomm v. Apple dispute, and he was personally tapped by Apple CEO Tim Cook to manage negotiations for the Apple Park campus.
Apple held an internal investigation after learning about the TikTok video, and afterward, he was removed from his team of a dozen direct reports and several hundred employees. Blevins told Bloomberg that he was sorry for what he said. “I would like to take this opportunity to apologize to anyone who was offended by my mistaken attempt at humor,” he said.
An Apple spokesperson also confirmed that Blevins will be leaving the company, a decision that came down to Apple’s senior vice president of operations, Jeff Williams. Williams will be overseeing Blevins’ team following his departure.
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