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Apple strikes deal with failed sapphire glass supplier

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Apple Watch

Apple has come to an agreement with former sapphire glass supplier GT Advanced Technologies to write off its vast debts.

The two had entered into an arrangement to produce toughened glass for Apple products, with Apple lending GT Advanced $439 million to kickstart a massive sapphire glass production process.

However, GT was unable to produce the sapphire glass material (which covers the Apple Watch) to Apple's exacting standards. GT Advanced filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy around this time last year, to the surprise of shareholders.

As a result, the two company's agreed to a settlement that would enable GT to try and sell the vast number of sapphire glass furnaces to pay back some of its loan. It turns out that GT Advanced has been unable to sell a single one of the 2,000 furnaces in the past year.

Under this new agreement, according to The Wall Street Journal, Apple will eradicate GT Advanced's debt to it. GT Advanced, for its part, will have to auction off some of its equipment by November 23, with the proceeds then being divided between the two. Apple will also get to keep whatever equipment isn't sold or carted off by GT.

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The equipment manufacturer intends to take 600 sapphire-making furnaces for its own usage.

All in all, it marks an end to a particularly messy episode in Apple's bid to make its mobile products more resistant to shattering.

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