Apple VP Dropped After Sexist Joke in Viral TikTok: Report

According to a report from Bloomberg‘s Mark Gurman, Apple is parting ways with its Vice President of Procurement, Tony Blevins, after the latter was filmed making an inappropriate joke in a viral TikTok video.

Blevins was one of Apple’s top supply chain executives and one of Tim Cook’s most effective cost cutters. Most recently, he worked on Apple’s satellite agreement with Globalstar. He has also led negotiations over cellular modems with Qualcomm and Intel.

The former VP had half a dozen direct reports and several hundred employees working under him.

“I have rich cars, play golf, and fondle big-breasted women, but I take weekends and major holidays off,” Blevins told digital creator Daniel Mac in a TikTok video published on September 5. He also boasted that he has a “hell of a dental plan.”

Mac publishes a video series where he goes around asking owners of expensive cars what they do for a living. He met Blevins at an August car show in Pebble Beach, California, as the exec was getting out of his Mercedes-Benz SLR McLaren.

“I would like to take this opportunity to sincerely apologize to anyone who was offended by my mistaken attempt at humour,” Blevins said in a statement to Bloomberg, confirming the incident.

His comments were meant to reference a line from the 1981 movie Arthur, where the titular main character describes his own career by saying: “I race cars, play tennis, and fondle women, but I have weekends off and I am my own boss.”

The video in question has racked up 40,000 likes on Instagram and 1.3 million views on TikTok. According to people familiar with the matter, Blevins’ remarks weren’t received well internally at Apple.

The clip was reported to the human resources department, the people said. Apple then launched an internal investigation into the matter.

Apple’s Chief Operating Officer, Jeff Williams, ultimately decided it was best to let Blevins go, said one of the people. Williams was Blevins’ boss for most of the latter’s 22 years at Apple, and he will take over Blevins’ responsibilities for the time being.

An Apple spokesman confirmed Blevins’ impending departure from the company on Thursday.

According to employees familiar with his work, Blevins will leave behind pretty big shoes to fill. Over the span of his tenure, Blevins has been key to Apple’s growing profit margins and ensuring the company gets access to critical technologies before competitors.