updated 10:35 am EDT, Thu March 17, 2011
Disaster takes toll on public, industry
Apple CEO Steve Jobs has sent an e-mail memo out to workers in the company's Japanese division, according to reports. "To Our Team in Japan," the message begins. "We have all been following the unfolding disaster in Japan. Our hearts go out to you and your families, as well as all of your countrymen who have been touched by this tragedy."
"If you need time or resources to visit or care for your families, please see HR and we will help you," the e-mail continues. "If you are aware of any supplies that are needed, please also tell HR and we will do what we can to arrange delivery. Again, our hearts go out to you during this unimaginable crisis. Please stay safe." The memo is technically credited to both Jobs and "the entire Executive Team."
The earthquake, tsunami and nuclear crises which have hit Japan have left thousands dead, and significant parts of the country's industrial base in jeopardy. Apple may be affected most by the temporary shutdowns of Toshiba and Mitsubishi Gas Chemical, which could delay component shipments and/or raise their prices. Local sales have also been disrupted, for instance postponing an iPad 2 launch.