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Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) is one of the greatest high-tech success stories of all time. Helmed by the visionary, charismatic and sometimes controversial Steve Jobs until his recent untimely death, Apple has morphed into one of the world's leading companies. Starting out strictly as a personal computer maker, Apple is best known for its iPod, iPhone and iPad. It is these products that catapulted Apple from a cult brand into the mainstream.
In less than five months, AAPL shares have soared from below $400 to about $520 currently. This 30% increase is impressive, but shares are still trading well below the all-time highs above $700 hit last year. The bullish fever surrounding Apple is so hot that some pundits are calling for a $1,000 share price in the not-so-distant future.
The company has made millionaires out of stock traders who rode it to profits from its relatively humble launch. In addition, traders with the foresight to buy shares on any price dips have also made out like modern-day bandits.
Unfortunately, Apple's success has made trading its shares difficult for many. Its high price makes the stock prohibitive for many traders. One needs to be swinging a big stick to be able to commit $500,000 plus just to trade 1,000 shares. While options can be alternative tools to capture profits from Apple's moves, there is another, simpler way to profit from Apple's success.
And that is to purchase shares in companies that supply products and services to Apple. When these products or services are a critical part of the supply chain for Apple's hottest new products, the company supplying them may ride Apple's coattails to great success.
The key is to locate a supplier that is reasonably priced and has a multiyear contract with Apple. This helps ensure the longevity of the relationship. And the lower price enables investors with practically any account size to play Apple's success.
GT Advanced Technologies (NASDAQ: GTAT) is one such Apple supplier that has tremendous upside potential. The New Hampshire-based company boasts a market cap of $1.2 billion and trailing 12-month revenue of $438.5 million. It specializes in crystal growth equipment for the electronic, solar and LED industries worldwide.
Apple just inked a multiyear deal to purchase sapphire material from GTAT. This will likely be the impetus to lift the share price. Apple is giving GTAT a little less than $600 million to help it get its new sapphire furnace production facility up and running in Arizona. GTAT plans on employing over 700 people in this endeavor.
Apple uses sapphire material to create scratch-proof glass screens. Sapphire glass has long been used as the crystal on high-end wrist watches such as Rolexs and other luxury brands. It is favored due to its hard, scratch-proof nature and its crystal-clear clarity. GTAT beat competitor Corning's (NYSE: GLW) Gorilla Glass product for the contract.
GTAT projects that the deal will boost earnings and revenue, which is expected to ramp up to $600 million to $800 million in 2014. The sapphire segment of the company is forecasted to contribute 80% of the 2014 revenue.
GTAT has been struggling primarily due to its core solar business. Revenue in the latest quarter was just over $40 million, and net income was a loss of more than $38 million. Apple's contract should change this weak performance into a long-term winner
GTAT is expected to pay back Apple's nearly $600 million by 2020. This fact proves that Apple has a long-term commitment to sapphire glass and GTAT. Apple's continued support of the company should lift the share price.
I think an investment in GTAT at these low levels could pay off big.
Recommended Trade Setup:
-- Buy GTAT on a break above $10.50-- Set stop-loss at $8.97-- Set initial price target at $14.23 for a potential 36% gain in three months
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