There’s only one Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) right? The California tech company has dominated the industry for the past decade mapping out the future of the market and capitalizing on it leaving everybody else trailing them. The company has surprised everybody with its recovery from its 1990s slump and is now the most valuable company in the world. For those of you who think this is something to be praised and think a business so uniquely trend setting could not have a twin, think again. One firm says that it is Apple’s double and its selling that idea to its shareholders.
Illumina Inc. (NASDAQ:ILMN) is a firm that makes scientific equipment for the field of genomics. Genomics is, apparently, the study of genomes in an organism. It is a biological science in genetics and Illumina makes the equipment necessary for the practice. Following so far? In a letter addressed to shareholders the company said that “Illumina is like the Apple of the genomics business” a bold claim but one unlikely to garner much notice at Cupertino. The move comes as a Swiss pharmaceuticals company seeks to buy the equipment manufacturer and is a plea to shareholders not to sell their stock. The company pleads that their likeness to Apple means shareholders should hold onto their stock like they would Apple’s.
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The company may just be able to pull of the renaissance for genomics among the general public that Apple did for tablet computers. The models were heavily marketed by Microsoft a decade before Apple relaunched them as their own. Microsoft’s version have been all but forgotten about outside of lurid web slide shows and garages that need cleaning. The same could be said for the general public’s attitude toward genomics. Nobody really knows anything about it or really cares much and the last advance in genetics popularly remembered is the discovery of DNA, or rather that it exists. Apple started from complete oblivion in the tablet market, so too might Illumina with an exciting range of consumer genomics products, available at Best Buy and Amazon.
Failing that the company’s weak attempt to connect itself with Apple smacks of the counterfeit merchandise the company had to deal with in China. Several fake Apple stores had been opened there by last year. Now a company less than 1% the size of Apple is pretending to be the tech giant.