23 February 2024

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Apple Supplier Pegatron Halts iPhone Production After Factory Fire

According to three sources, Apple supplier Pegatron has advised its manufacturing workers not to report for work on Tuesday, pausing iPhone model assembly for the second day in a row at its south India facility where a fire broke out on Sunday.

According to people with intimate knowledge of the situation, the workers were not provided an explanation for the command.

According to two sources, the Taiwanese business called off all shifts on Monday at the facility near Chennai in Tamil Nadu state following the fire incident.

Apple Growing Presence and Local Manufacturing

Pegatron earlier stated to Reuters in a statement on Monday that “there was a spark incident” at the factory that is now under control. The event “does not have a significant financial or operational impact” on the organisation, it added.

While the plant has a production capability of around 26,000 iPhone models per day, an industry source claims that it has been assembling between 8,000-12,000 iPhone models per day in recent months.

Pegatron declined to comment on the estimated output.

Apple did not reply to a request for comment.

According to a local official with the emergency response agency, many fire engines from various stations had to be sent in to douse the fire, which took approximately five hours.

“There are no injuries, casualties, or damage to other assets.” “The cause of (the) accident is currently being investigated by (the) relevant authority,” Pegatron added.

A police officer told Reuters that an investigation was ongoing in collaboration with the fire department, and that the event was minor.

According to local media, the fire caused black smoke to fill the surrounding region late Monday, with images showing security officers attempting to remove a throng that had collected outside the facility’s entrance.

Previous Setbacks for Apple Indian Suppliers

According to research company Counterpoint, Pegatron accounts for 10% of Apple’s iPhone production in India. It is expected that Apple would sell over nine million iPhone models in India this year.

Apple has placed a large bet on India since beginning iPhone manufacture there in 2017 through Wistron and then Foxconn, as the Indian government pushed for local manufacturing.

Pegatron, which began iPhone assembly in India in September of last year, is also in discussions with Apple to construct a second Indian contract plant near the existing one in Tamil Nadu.

The event is the latest setback for one of Apple’s 14 Indian suppliers.

Food poisoning among workers at a Foxconn site halted production in 2021, while worker unrest over nonpayment of salaries at a Wistron plant in India halted production in 2020. A fire at Foxlink’s South Indian plant producing iPhone charging cords prompted the company to cease operations in February.

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