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Apple’s CFO Peter Oppenheimer set to retire this autumn

The Chief Financial Officer of Apple, Peter Oppenheimer, is going to retire at the end of September.

Oppenheimer – who has been CFO for a decade – is a name that we’re long used to seeing on Apple’s press releases announcing its latest record revenues and profits, boasting about how the fiscal future is rosy – but now someone else will have to take over the balancing of Cupertino’s books.

And who will that someone else be? Corporate Controller Luca Maestri is the chosen successor. The process of the handover will actually begin in June, Reuters reports, well ahead of Oppenheimer’s autumn retirement.

Maestri, who is 50 – just a year younger than Oppenheimer – has apparently been earmarked as the next CFO since he arrived at Cupertino. CEO Tim Cook noted that: "When we were recruiting for a corporate controller, we met Luca and knew he would become Peter's successor.”

Maestri had been CFO at his previous company, Xerox.

He isn’t joining at an easy time for Apple, though. While sure enough, the last earnings report saw the usual record figures, the company’s stock slumped by close to 10 per cent after the announcement.

Investors are worried that Apple isn’t pushing through with its next big product quickly enough – and more so now, given the recent news that the high-end of the smartphone market isn’t performing as well. There was a major trend towards the low-end with handset vendors at last week’s MWC, precisely because of this.

Tim Cook has recently been trying to placate investors, assuring them that Cupertino has been heavily investing in research, and the next major product is in the pipeline – but Apple needs to put a product where its mouth is before too long.

Another year of incremental iGadget upgrades is going to make investors even more nervous – and Maestri’s press release quotes more difficult to write as he takes the CFO seat in September.

As for Oppenheimer? He’ll be flying high, for sure. Apparently he intends to finish off qualifying for his pilot’s license.