Here comes the sun for the 2,000 people who will have new jobs created by Apple in Arizona. 9to5Mac said Monday the company chose Mesa for a new manufacturing facility where 700 will be employed to produce Apple products while another 1,300 people will build the facility. Banking on Arizona’s abundant sunshine, Apple will also create a new solar grid in the city for the facility’s power.
In what looks to be related news, N.H.-based GT Advanced Technologies announced a new multiyear deal with Apple to produce sapphire material used in Apple products. And in typical Apple fashion, the company is managing its supply chain interests with a large prepayment to GT:
“GT will own and operate ASF furnaces and related equipment to produce the material at an Apple facility in Arizona where GT expects to employ over 700 people. Apple will provide GT with a prepayment of approximately $578 million. GT will reimburse Apple for the prepayment over five years, starting in 2015.
Although the agreement does not guarantee volumes, it does require GT to maintain a minimum level of capacity. GT will be subject to certain exclusivity terms during the duration of the agreement. GT expects this arrangement to be cash positive and accretive to earnings starting in 2014. “
The development of a new facility that doesn’t require additional energy from Mesa looks to be a part of a growing movement to boost jobs in the U.S. for technology product manufacturing. Apple previously said its new Mac Pro desktop computers would be assembled in Texas.