Apple chief executive Tim Cook: 'I'm proud to be gay'

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Apple chief executive Tim Cook has publicly come out as gay in an article he wrote in Bloomberg Businessweek.

Cook has never previously acknowledged his sexual orientation in public.

"So let me be clear: I'm proud to be gay, and I consider being gay among the greatest gifts God has given me," Cook said in the article.

He explained that friends and colleagues knew and it had not made a difference to the way he was treated.

For years, I’ve been open with many people about my sexual orientation. Plenty of colleagues at Apple know I’m gay, and it doesn’t seem to make a difference in the way they treat me. Of course, I’ve had the good fortune to work at a company that loves creativity and innovation and knows it can only flourish when you embrace people’s differences.

Tim Cook
Tim Cook holds a new iPad after a presentation at Apple headquarters in Cupertino earlier this month. Credit: Reuters

He added:

Being gay has given me a deeper understanding of what it means to be in the minority and provided a window into the challenges that people in other minority groups deal with every day. It’s made me more empathetic, which has led to a richer life. It’s been tough and uncomfortable at times, but it has given me the confidence to be myself, to follow my own path, and to rise above adversity and bigotry. It’s also given me the skin of a rhinoceros, which comes in handy when you’re the CEO of Apple.

Tim Cook

Cook took over as head of the technology giant after the death of Steve Jobs in 2011.

He has an estimated worth of around £250m.