Yes, boy and girls, Apple really wanted to deliver the iPhone 6 and/or iPhone 6 Plus protected by super hardened sapphire crystal. However, as the Apple vs GT Advanced bankruptcy case has revealed, GT choked hard and is now facing the fire.
As the sudden bankruptcy and, now, apparent full-on collapse of GT Advanced Technologies proceeds, details about the would-be sapphire producer and its relationship with Apple trickle out. First and foremost, GT Advanced’s collapse is due to the fact that it couldn’t produce industrial sapphire in the quality and/or quantity Apple needed.
That caused Apple to withhold a planned final payment of $139 million to GT Advanced. That was part of a total $578 million investment Apple agreed to make in GT that purchased and set up, apparently with a high degree of failure, a massive 1.3 million square foot sapphire manufacturing plant in Arizona.
If it had been successful, the Arizona sapphire factory would have more than doubled the world supply of industrial sapphire with a single stroke. Who knows? Maybe that’s still a possibility.
Now, according to Wall Street Journal, Apple and GT Advanced are meeting behind closed bankruptcy courtroom doors. Specifically, due to a range of secrecy agreements GT signed with Apple and US bankruptcy judge Henry Boroff has agreed to uphold them.
If GT were to violate the veil of secrecy, it could cost the company $50 million.
Apple vs GT Advanced: Crocodile Tears?
That said, GT Advanced says it wants to shut down and wind up its new Arizona sapphire factory. Apple, on the other hand, has publicly stated it wants to preserve the jobs at the Arizona facility, which might be a public posture or could reflect company’s actual wishes.
“The company feels terrible about that loss of value and we will work every day, 24/7, to try to recover that value,” said GT lawyer James Grogan.
Apple has also said it was surprised by GT’s sudden move to seek Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.
While I know absolutely nothing of the goings on here, Apple will end up owning the Arizona sapphire factory, if only for a few minutes, and very well could end up ingesting GT Advanced, as well…
What’s your take on the Apple vs GT Advanced shenanigans?