High-tech glass specialist Corning Inc. (GLW) built up consecutive gains throughout 2016, as its stock, trading at a price of $24.28 per share, represents an approximate 35% increase year to date (YTD).

Investors have applauded the firm’s consecutive quarterly earnings beats, along with its strengthening product portfolio and push into new markets such as clean-auto tech, wearables, aerospace and defense.

Targeting Growth

Throughout 2016, the firm has released a series of enhanced versions of its successful Gorilla Glass products, with its latest SR+ model targeted at the booming wearable tech space. Just last week, the firm announced it would acquire Connecticut-based STRAN Technologies in order to bolster its position outside its main consumer electronics segment, into military and aerospace, as well as oil and gas. Corning also recently secured a minority stake in GE-backed Menlo Ventures, foreseeing the next-generation of electronic switching solutions to bolster the firm’s positions across an array of industries. (See also: Corning Invests in GE-Backed Menlo Micro.)

The Corning, N.Y.-based company’s most recent third-quarter earnings, released in October, surpassed analysts’ earnings estimates by 10% on revenues, which beat forecasts by 1%. Corning successfully grew adjusted earnings per share (EPS) 24% on a year-over-year (YOY) basis to $0.42 per share, on revenues of $2.55 billion in the most recent quarter. (See also: Corning’s Q3 Results Beat Estimates.)

Returning $6B to Shareholders This Year

The next-gen technology leader has pleased investors with various announcements that it is on track with its “Strategy and Capital Allocation Framework,” designed to create significant value for shareholders. The firm updated the framework in June, committing to deliver over $12.5 billion to shareholders while investing $10 billion to sustain the company’s leadership positions and growth.

By the end of 2016, management says it will have returned around $6 billion to shareholders through repurchases and dividends. Corning’s shares further rose in value in early December after news that its board approved an additional $4 billion share-repurchase program.

Moving forward, Corning will push its initiative to advance growth opportunities within a “focused portfolio,” targeting projects in the mobile consumer-electronics market and automotive space.


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