Davos WEF
Davos WEF

Apple CEO Tim Cook went to Davos for the first time — here's what he did

Key Points
  • Apple CEO Tim Cook attended the World Economic Forum in Davos for the first time.
  • He met with heads of state including the crown prince of Dubai and Brazil's right-wing President Jair Bolsonaro.
  • It's unclear what Cook discussed with any of the people he met.
Tim Cook, Apple CEO
John Chiala | CNBC

DAVOS, Switzerland — Apple CEO Tim Cook is on his first trip ever to the World Economic Forum, meeting high profile world leaders, amid mounting troubles for the technology giant.

Details of what he did and whom he met have not been made public but pictures have surfaced on social media of some of his meetings.

Cook's attendance at Davos comes after Apple recently slashed first-quarter revenue guidance and as it faces problems in China.

An Apple spokesperson has not responded to a request for comment from CNBC.

Here's what we know Cook did at Davos.

Dinner with Brazilian president

Cook, along with Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, joined Brazil's right-wing President Jair Bolsonaro for dinner, according to a picture posted on Twitter.


It's unclear what was discussed and Brazil is not yet a major market but could hold potential due to its status as an emerging economy.

Bolsonaro is a divisive figure who has made many inflammatory comments in the past few years.

In 2013, he said he would "rather have a son who is an addict than a son who is gay," according to a list of comments compiled by The New York Times.

Cook came out as gay in 2014 and is a huge advocate of LGBTQ rights and equality in the workplace.

Meeting with Armenian leader

Cook was pictured speaking to Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan. The Armenian leader's senior advisor Arsen Gasparyan confirmed the meeting on his Facebook page.

"What a great start at the World Economic Forum in Davos, with perhaps a bit of magic waiting somewhere behind this morning," he wrote.

Again, it is unclear what was discussed, and Armenia is not a major market for Apple.

Talk with royalty

Cook met with Dubai's Crown Prince Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed Al Maktoum.

According to a tweet from the ruler, he discussed the "advancements of global firms in the region," suggesting that the United Arab Emirates is a good way to tap the broader Middle East market.


Apple has a 25 percent market share in the Gulf Cooperation Council area, which includes the UAE, according to data from IDC.

European focus

Sebastian Kurz, the chancellor of Austria, tweeted on Thursday that he also met with Cook.

They discussed how to "successfully shape Europe's digital future."


The Financial Times reported that Cook is set to also meet with Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte.

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