GT Advanced Laying Off 727 Employees, Delisted on NASDAQ

GT Advanced looks to be deep into its death spiral after its Chapter 11 Bankruptcy filing from earlier this month. GTAT is laying off 727 employees from the factory where it made sapphire glass for Apple, and has been delisted from the NASDAQ stock exchange.

GTAT firing over 700 employees from its Mesa, AZ sapphire factoryGTAT firing over 700 employees from its Mesa, AZ sapphire factory

The company notified 524 production workers, 108 technical positions, 70 managers, and 25 administrative workers on Thursday they will lose their jobs as early as next Tuesday, according to AZ Central.

Apple partnered with GTAT a year ago for synthetic sapphire glass production for the Apple Watch and the iPhone 6 and iOS 6 Plus. Apple bought and then leased factory space in Mesa, Arizona, to the company, and agreed to finance US$578 million so GTAT could buy thousands of furnaces to produce the glass.

When GTAT failed to meet its contractual obligations, Apple delayed its payments, and ultimately withheld its final $139 million payment. When Apple announced the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus was using Ion-x glass instead of sapphire, GTAT's stock to a hit and has continued to decline ever since.

The company ultimately filed for bankruptcy protection and said Apple's terms were "oppressive and burdensome." It has also asked the bankruptcy court to approve its plan to shut down the factory.

GTAT's stock value has dropped down to $0.43 and the company has been delisted from the NASDAQ stock exchange. NASDAQ policy required the delisting when GTAT announced its bankruptcy filing and the company apparently has not filed an appeal, which means its stock is doomed to the world of pink slip trading.

Apple has said it is working with state and local officials to help preserve jobs in the Mesa area, but unless the company can come up with a plan soon it looks like over 700 people will be on the hunt for work.