“Could a Cardiff, Wales-based wafer company be the next big thing for U.K. technology investors?” Aine Quinn reports for Bloomberg. “Investors trying to sniff out hidden Apple Inc. suppliers are betting on it, sending the shares of IQE Plc up more than 300 percent this year.”

“The company is the second-best performer in the FTSE AIM 100 Index year-to-date and has also beaten every stock in the Philadelphia Semiconductor Index, including high-fliers Nvidia Corp. and Micron Technology Inc.,” Quinn reports. “And even with the cautionary tale of companies who flew too close to Apple’s sun still fresh in investors’ minds, some analysts say IQE’s run is just getting started.”

“The main reason for the excitement is familiar: speculation that IQE may be selling wafers needed by the technology giant for its new iPhone, expected to be introduced next week with sensors that use facial recognition to unlock the screen,” Quinn reports. “IQE makes wafers that are needed for Vertical Cavity Surface Emitting Lasers (VCSELs), used for 3D sensors and widely thought to be included in the new iPhone… IQE Chief Executive Officer Andrew Nelson declined to comment directly on whether the company is a supplier to Apple, but said in an interview that IQE has about 80 percent of the VCSEL wafer market and supplies ‘pretty much all of the main players in the end markets.'”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: It’s always a fun and/or harrowing rollercoaster ride trying to divine and play Apple suppliers.