Apple invests $200m in Corning to revolutionise glass technology

12 May 20176 Shares

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A glass pile at the Corning manufacturing plant. Image: Apple

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Apple’s new Advanced Manufacturing Fund has made its first investment.

Tech giant Apple is to invest $200m in Corning to support revolutionary glass production methods.

Last week, it emerged that Apple had created a new $1bn Advanced Manufacturing Fund to foster innovation among American manufacturers.

‘This partnership started 10 years ago with the very first iPhone and today, every customer that buys an iPhone or iPad anywhere in the world touches glass that was developed in America’
– JEFF WILLIAMS

Corning’s 65-year-old Harrodsburg facility will be the focus of Apple’s investment, which will support the former’s R&D, capital equipment needs and state-of-the-art glass processing.

Apple has collaborated with Corning throughout the 10-year history of the iPhone.

A glass act

Apple invests $200m in Corning to revolutionise the future of glass technology

Workers at the Corning plant in Harrodsburg, Kentucky. Image: Apple

Since the inception of Gorilla Glass in 2007, the partnership between Apple and Corning has created and sustained nearly 1,000 US jobs in R&D, manufacturing and commercial functions, including more than 400 in Harrodsburg alone.

Corning said it has procured enough renewable energy to cover all of its Apple manufacturing in the US.

“Corning is a great example of a supplier that has continued to innovate and they are one of Apple’s long-standing suppliers,” said Jeff Williams, Apple’s chief operating officer.

“This partnership started 10 years ago with the very first iPhone and today, every customer that buys an iPhone or iPad anywhere in the world touches glass that was developed in America.

“We’re extremely proud of our collaboration over the years and we are investing further with Corning, who has such a rich legacy of innovative manufacturing practices.”

Apple’s Advanced Manufacturing Fund is designed to foster innovative production and highly skilled jobs that will help lay the foundations for a new era of technology-driven manufacturing in the US.

Apple invests $200m in Corning to revolutionise the future of glass technology

A glass worker at Corning in Harrodsburg, Kentucky. Image: Apple

In the US, Apple now supports 2m jobs across all 50 states, including 450,000 jobs attributable to Apple’s spend and investment with US-based suppliers.

Apple said it has spent more than $50bn in the past year, with more than 9,000 domestic suppliers and manufacturers.

“Corning’s long-standing relationship with Apple has not only led to significant glass innovations that have enabled new capabilities for consumers, it has also helped create nearly 1,000 American jobs and allowed us to continue growing and expanding in the US,” said Wendell P Weeks, CEO at Corning.

“This investment will ensure our plant in Harrodsburg remains a global centre of excellence for glass technology.”

Editor John Kennedy is an award-winning technology journalist.

editorial@siliconrepublic.com