"Do you want to sell sugared water for the rest of your life? Or do you want to come with me and change the world?"
That was the famous question Steve Jobs posed to John Sculley in 1983. At the time, Sculley had risen through the ranks of Pepsi-Cola to become the brand's youngest president. Jobs needed a business-minded expert to effectively price, market and distribute his new Macintosh. From there, one of history's most influential business partnerships was formed.
Now, decades after that initial conversation, Apple's yearly revenue has grown from $1 billion to more than $233 billion in 2015. Despite having a mound of cash at its disposal, the company has hit some rough shoals lately. It turned in its weakest quarterly results in more than a decade, amid underwhelming sales of its new smartwatch and waning demand for its signature products like the iPhone and iPad.
With that in mind, Sculley still sees potential for the tech giant he helped to build. This week, Sculley told CNBC that Apple could benefit from a unique partnership that could ultimately usher in a revolutionary era for global communications.
"What if the Apple Watch became the perfect device for the next generation of smart messaging services? What if Tim Cook and [Facebook CEO] Mark Zuckerberg got together and said: 'Let's make the Apple Watch a great platform for Facebook messaging?'" Sculley said on CNBC's "Fast Money" this week. There appear to be no plans for such a move.