Recently, Korean panel maker LG Display (LGD) plans to increase the production of TV OLED panels to 4 million units in 2019, and increase production by 40% from the 2018 estimate (2.8 million units). By promoting the popularity of OLEDs, we will ensure ownership in the TV market dominated by Chinese manufacturers.
Large-size OLED panels for TV are difficult to produce. LGD currently controls nearly 100% of the market share. In addition to its own group LG Electronics, LGD also supplies OLED panels to Japanese and Chinese TV manufacturers such as Sony and Panasonic.
In order to increase the production of OLED panels for TV, LGD has increased its investment in OLED equipment. In 2017, LGD invested nearly 5 trillion won in OLED manufacturing equipment. In 2018, more than 80% of the equipment investment of 9 trillion won was used for OLED.
According to British research company Euromonitor, the global sales of OLED TVs in 2017 was 1.53 million units, and the sales volume was less than 1% of LCD TVs, but more than doubled compared with 2016.
According to the financial report released by LGD on July 25, due to the sluggish panel price, LGD's last quarter (April-June 2018) was converted from a profit of 840 billion won to a loss of 228 billion won. LGD surrendered its first loss in the past six years in Q1 (January-March) in 2018, while the previous quarter's loss increased to 2.3 times the Q1 of 2018. However, LGD stressed that the focus of operations will still be transferred from liquid crystal (LCD) to OLED.
IHS Markit published a forecast report on October 24, 2017, indicating that the global OLED panel (TV + smartphone) capacity is expected to increase to 50.1 million square meters in 2022, which will reach 4.2 times in 2017, including TV. The "white" OLED panel capacity is expected to increase to 18.2 million square meters, which will be 6.1 times that of 2017.
According to Korean media reports, BOE, one of the key panel factories in mainland China, is provoking price wars in the global LCD market. Currently, the price of 65-inch LCD panels is “bargained” to between 240 and 250 US dollars, allowing competition. The opponents are like SDC and LGD.