Odyssey-Pepsi to Apple

Sometimes, an ordinary question fired at us changes the very course of our life. The above Q falls in such a category. It was fired by Steve Jobs, co-founder of Apple Computers to John Sculley, the marketing wizard and President of Pepsi, ushering in one of the most fantastic transitions in the world of business. Odyssey-Pepsi to Apple co-authored by John Sculley with John.A.Byrne is not just the story of Sculley’s transition from Pepsi to Apple, but a story of a journey into unseen territories by one of the most famous, unconventional marketing wizards of corporate America, in Sculley’s own words.

This book is a must for all people involved in marketing. For it offers a first class lesson into the practical world of marketing, let alone what you learn in your B school. John Sculley takes you on a wonderful journey into two different worlds-Pepsi and Apple Computers and we get to read how John Sculley turned around both the companies.

The first half of the book deals with Sculley’s early life, his entry into Pepsi, his gradual but steady rise, his friendship and tutoring from Don Kendall, Chairman of Pepsi, the famous Cola wars where Sculley’s unconventional ideas helped unseat Coke from the market leader position and brought Pepsi into the halls of consumers, in his own words.

The second part deals with Sculley being courted by Steve Jobs, his subsequent refusal and self doubts on entering a different world, his entry into Apple, the early days, the Dynamic Duo, the clash of the titans, Jobs’ penchant of meddling in each and every aspect of Apple and Sculley setting the company right, Apple’s new birth from a computer company into a company with a larger vision.

This is one of my most cherished and favorite books. The marketing lessons sprinkled at the end of each chapter succeeding the practical implementation only makes you get more interested in reading this. This is a must on every avid book reader and marketer’s shelf.

John Sculley with his Pepsi bottles:

John Sculley with Steve Jobs and Steve Woz:

Jobs and Sculley:


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