Apple’s co-founders Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak generally get most of the credit for the company’s early success, but according to Wozniak, there’s another occasionally overlooked figure who really deserves the credit.
“Mike Markkula was actually the one man and one person who made Apple a successful company,” Wozniak said Friday at a business lecture in Australia, according to Perth Now, a local paper.
Markkula, seen here with Jobs, was a key figure in Apple’s early days, bankrolling the company in the beginning with a $250,000 investment, convincing Wozniak to work at Apple instead of HP and even writing some software for one of Apple’s first computers. But it wasn’t the investment or the coaching that Wozniak called out in his lecture, so much as the way Markkula fundamentally changed the company’s business strategy early on.
“He made it a marketing-driven company (as opposed to a engineering-driven company),” Perth Now reports.
Indeed, as Walter Isaacson explained in his biography of Steve Jobs, Markkula penned a three-point marketing guide for the company called The Apple Marketing Philosophy, which effectively laid out what Apple needed to do to compete for customers and build its brand. As Wozniak suggests, this more than anything else may have made the company what it is today.