Apple has vowed to protect jobs in Mesa, Arizona, and told city leaders it will not walk away from its stricken sapphire glass factory.
The future of the entire city of Mesa looked deeply uncertain after Apple ally GT Technologies filed for bankruptcy, shutting down the factory and axing 890 jobs.
Now Cupertino has quietly reassured locals that it still intends to operate the factory, although it might not be used to produce sapphire glass.
“They’ve indicated their commitment to us: They want to re-purpose that building and use it again,” Mesa city manager Christopher Brady told Bloomberg.
He claimed Apple had told him it was hellbent “on preserving jobs in Arizona” and vowed to “work with state and local officials as we consider our next steps”.
Apple has always dreamed of moving production back onshore in America. The sapphire glass factory was intended to be a bridgehead for its domestic production coup, before the whole plan collapsed along with GT Technologies, the company tasked with manufacturing this so-called wonder material for use in the iThings of the future.
After GT's bankruptcy announcement, Apple immediately issued a statement in which it insisted it was "focused on preserving jobs in Arizona following GT's surprising decision".
According to Mesa's Mayor John Giles, Tim Cook and company are still interested in cleaning up the Mesa left behind by GT.
“Apple could’ve invested in a facility literally anywhere in the world," he said. "There’s a reason they came here, and none of those reasons have changed.” ®