What’s the first thing that comes to your head when you think of a tech company executive? Is it a man wearing a light blue suit and union jack shirt driving a Mercedes-Benz spouting off about “fondling women” without much prompting? Then yes, you’re spot on. Well done.
TikTok content creator Danial Mac asks people in expensive cars about their livelihood and posts their responses on the platform. In a now-viral video released Sept. 5, a man pulls up in a Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren to a car show in Pebble Beach, California. When asked what he does for a living, the man responded: “I have rich cars, play golf, and fondle big-breasted women.” The man in the video turned out to be Apple’s vice president of procurement, Tony Blevins.
The exec has a storied career in tech, Bloomberg reports. Blevin’s was instrumental in negotiations for modems with Qualcomm and Intel and recently worked out a satellite deal with Globalstar. In a 2020 profile by The Wall Street Journal, Blevins was known for his brash attitude toward negotiating deals for the company. He was sometimes known as “the Blevinator” at the company, according to WSJ’s report.
Apple reportedly conducted an investigation and removed the exec from his office, which oversaw several hundred employees working on Apple’s supply chains operations. Apple did not immediately respond to Gizmodo’s request for comment, but the company did confirm with Bloomberg that Blevins was leaving the company after 22 years with the iPhone maker.
Apple has worked hard to cement its domineering grasp over its own supply chains, and Blevins has been a major part of that effort. But just like so many other big tech companies, Apple has felt the hurt of supply chain woes and slowing markets. Reports from July show the company was considering slowing hiring.
This is an especially bad look for a company that’s been mired in accusations that it ignores claims of sexual harassment at nearly every level of operations. One recent report, based on interviews with over a dozen women who work or worked at the company, noted that Apple’s human resources department routinely fails to credit accusations of sexual harassment. The #AppleToo movement, organized by the company’s workers in both retail and corporate, argues that the company has a “culture of secrecy” that protects bad actors from accountability.
The Blevinator isn’t the only top Apple exec to recently find themselves in a high profile debacle. One of Apple’s top lawyers for most of the decade after 2010, Gene Levoff, pled guilty to insider trading earlier this year.