A glut of sapphire supply, caused by lots of companies getting into the market thinking Apple and Samsung were converting to sapphire window covers, drove sapphire prices to money-losing levels. There was a spike in LED sapphire usage a couple years ago when TVs switched to using LEDs, too. Throw in RBCN's higher finishing costs and you have a company that has lost big money steadily.
They have some differentiated products which might help relatively soon. Their patterned sapphire substrate should sell well since it lowers customers production costs. Their coating sapphire on other materials (starting with glass) could be good for them later this year and next. Their large (~18" x 20") sapphire plates for the defense department could also sell, once they get them spec'ed and bid out. Good products coming down the road, but they've been coming for a while.
This is a company whose technology and management I actually like a lot, but which has cost me a ton of money. The current expensive board seat fight does not help any shareholder, I believe.
It is incredibly difficult language to decipher. My understanding is different than this. Above this wording on page 214 it says:
"If the merger agreement is terminated:
- by ETC or ETE following the failure of WMB stockholders to approve the merger proposal at the special meeting, then WMB will reimburse ETE for all out-of-pocket fees and expenses incurred in connection with the merger, up to $50.0 million;"
I believe WMB shareholders are much, much better off with WMB staying an independent company. $50 million is small potatoes to the firm (it paid $480 million in dividends in Q1 2016 alone), so it could reduce its dividends in one quarter and be free of ETE forever (once all the lawsuits are done, of course!)
While the WMB is "for" the merger, they have to say that so Williams is not obligated to pay the $1.48 billion.
I'm voting NO until I find a compelling reason to vote yes.