Apple's financial empire

Steve Jobs left behind a company in the best financial shape of its 35-year history.

Soaring sales
Soaring sales

The Apple Steve Jobs turned over to Tim Cook six weeks before his death looks nothing like the one he inherited in 1997, the year he returned as CEO. Apple had sales of $7.1 billion that year -- and a loss of more than $1 billion.

Now-iconic products like the iPod, iPhone and most recently the iPad have lifted Apple's sales into the stratosphere. By the end of 2011, Wall Street analysts expect Apple will be the second-largest tech company in the United States by revenue, behind only Hewlett-Packard. In just the first three quarters of this year, Apple has already racked up record sales of almost $80 billion -- and turned a $19.3 billion profit. Analysts expect its full-year sales to easily top $100 billion.

By David Goldman, staff writer & John R. Coughlin, designer - Last updated October 05 2011: 8:16 PM ET
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