GTAT, the would-be supplier of choice for Apple’s sapphire screen production, has reached a settlement over GT’s bankruptcy and plans to scale down its operations.
The deal, according to Fortune’s Philip Elmer-DeWitt, is that GT will sell 2039 furnaces to third-party companies. Apple don’t actually get their hands on these furnaces themselves, but instead they will deal with a number of smaller-scale manufacturing contracts with different companies. This means that Apple can still continue to use the facilities provided by GT, but without having to deal with the financial minefield of their bankruptcy.
These furnaces leaving GT’s hands has been accepted as a settlement of the $439 million owed. On top of that, Apple has allowed GT to use the sapphire production plant in Mesa, Arizona rent-free for a year as they wind down their operations. The news shortly follows the announcement that 700 jobs are going to be lost from the plant
GT’s lawyers stated that the deal “will save millions of dollars and solve most issues”, and referred to the settlement as an “amicable parting of ways.”