Mesa-Arizona

Apple’s sapphire processing plant in Mesa, AZ

The Wall Street Journal has cast some more light on recent reports that Apple’s sapphire supplier had declared bankruptcy earlier this week. According to the Journal’s report, Apple withheld a payment of $139 million from GT Advanced, though currently there’s no indication of why this decision was made.

In another interesting revelation, the Journal also discovered that the CEO of GT Advanced, Thomas Gutierrez, unloaded all of his stock in the company in a sale just one day before the iPhone 6 was unveiled. The device was widely expected to use sapphire supplied by GT for its displays. GT Advanced had enjoyed a rising stock price that had nearly doubled since initial rumors of a collaboration on the iPhone 6 started swirling.

The sale was scheduled back in March, about a month after initial sapphire iPhone rumors first appeared. While it’s true that Apple’s wearable device—announced on the same day as the iPhone—will use sapphire crystal displays, the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus sport only Gorilla Glass covers.

The 9,000 shares sold by Gutierrez the day before the announcement made him about $160,000. The following day, when it became public that GT was not supplying iPhone display covers, the company’s stock dropped 13%. Since February the executive has sold over 700,000 shares, grabbing him over $10 million On Monday, GT shares dropped another 93% after the supplier declared bankruptcy.

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