By Nancy Dahlberg
The Miami Herald.
Where can South Florida make its mark in technology? John Sculley, now an investor and mentor to entrepreneurs, believes the next big opportunities could be in healthcare.
“There has never been a better time to build a transformative multi-billion dollar company,” said Sculley, the former Apple and Pepsi CEO who lives in Palm Beach.
His new book Moonshot! Game Changing Strategies on How to Build a Billion Dollar Business and video series offer advice for entrepreneurs, real-world examples as well as plenty of war stories from his Apple days. Moonshot is Silicon Valley speak for an industry and economy changing company.
In his book, he writes about how the exponential growth of mobility, cloud computing and Big Data analytics have caused a power shift that places customers — not producers — in control, and how entrepreneurs can take advantage of that shift, presenting a huge opportunity for entrepreneurs. “Customers now pay more attention to the opinions of other customers than they do to large incumbent companies. … I’ve never seen anything on the scale of what is happening now.”
Sculley may be best known for firing Steve Jobs during his Apple tenure. (He told CNN in an interview recently that he wished he had invited him back.) But Sculley’s corporate career began in 1967 when as a Wharton MBA grad he was hired by Pepsi-Cola as a trainee.
Three years later, he became the company’s youngest vice president for marketing, applying his ideas about “experience-based marketing” to the Pepsi Generation campaign, including the Pepsi Challenge taste tests. By 1977, Sculley was Pepsi-Cola’s youngest CEO.
Since being forced out of Apple in 1993, Sculley has founded several companies and today is a mentor to about 15 startups in a diverse array of industries including telecommunications, financial services, healthcare, Internet services and consumer marketing.