Apple exec departs over crude remarks in viral TikTok

Apple is losing its longtime vice president of procurement, Tony Blevins, according to a new report from Bloomberg. The departure comes after Blevins made “crude remarks” in a TikTok video, which quickly went viral and was brought to Apple’s attention.

Blevins is a 22-year veteran of Apple and has worked closely with Tim Cook and other executives to help build Apple’s supply chain into the powerhouse that it is today. Bloomberg explains the situation:

In the video, published on Sept. 5, Apple’s Tony Blevins was approached by TikTok and Instagram creator Daniel Mac as part of a series where he asks owners of expensive cars their occupations. The executive was stopped by Mac while parking a Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren, an out-of-production sports car that fetches hundreds of thousands of dollars.

When asked what he does for a living, Blevins said, “I have race 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.”

As the TikTok gained traction and got brought to Apple’s attention, the company launched an investigation. The video is also said to have made its way to some of Apple’s supply chain partners. After the investigation, Apple relieved Blevins of his control of his team, which included “half a dozen direct reports and several hundred employees.” He will now depart the company altogether.

The comments made by Blevins are a reference to the 1981 movie Arthur, in which the main character describes his career as such: “I race cars, play tennis and fondle women, but I have weekends off and I am my own boss.”

Blevins was profiled by The Wall Street Journal in 2020 and described as being one of the most key Apple executives. The profile also noted, however, that Blevins would oftentimes badger and be overly aggressive when communicating and negotiating with supply chain partners.

In a statement to Bloomberg, Blevins confirmed that he would be departing Apple and apologized for his comments:

“I would like to take this opportunity to sincerely apologize to anyone who was offended by my mistaken attempt at humor,” he said.

Here is the TikTok in question (remember, crude language included):

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