OLED is a display technology that enables thin, efficient, flexible and bright displays, TVs and lighting devices. OLED displays offer the world's best image quality - and enables future foldable and rollable displays (see more here - What is OLED?).
The OLED market is already a multi-billion dollar market, led by Samsung and LG Display with their smartphone and TV OLED businesses. It is estimated that OLED displays generated around $25 billion in revenues in 2018 (and analysts expect the market to continue its fast growth in the future).
For public investors interested in the OLED market, there are several good options:
- Universal Display Corporation: UDC is an OLED pioneer, and holds many of the key patents in the industry (mostly around efficient phosphorescent OLED emitters). Virtually all AMOLED displays on the market adopt UDC's PHOLED materials, and the company experienced very fast growth in revenue in recent years. Universal Display's stock ticker is OLED, you can see the OLED share price here.
- eMagin: eMagin is an OLED microdisplay pioneer, and has been developing and producing such displays for many years, focusing on the defense market and recently also on the consumer VR/AR market. eMagin's stock ticker is EMAN.
- OLED display makers: OLED display makers can be a good investment opportunity - especially companies that have a focus on OLED displays - such as Samsung Display and LG display, BOE Display and more.
- OLED equipment makers: There are several public equipment companies (for example Coherent and Applied Materials) that enjoyed the recent OLED capacity expansion as new OLED fabs require new equipment to produce OLED displays. These companies could be a good investment opportunity to investors who believes a new wave of OLED capacity expansion is near.
For private investors who want to find early-stage startups, we offer the OLED crowdfunding arena, a new and innovative service!
We'll be happy to hear your thoughts on OLED investing - join the discussion at our investment forum!
The latest OLED stock news:
Earlier this year, OLED driver IC developer MagnaChip announced that it is being acquired by China-based Wise Road Capital, for $1.4 billion. We reported that the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) is looking into blocking this deal, and now the CFIUS made its final decision.
The CFIUS stated that "It has confirmed the national security risks that may arise in the United States from the acquisition of MagnaChip by the Chinese private equity fund". This pretty much cancels the potential acquisition.
LG Display says it will expand the capacity of its OLED assembly plant in Vietnam in a $1.4 billion investment.
The OLED plant, located in Hai Phong City, is used to assemble OLED panels - for mobile devices, TVs and automotive displays. The plant's capacity will grow from around 10 million monthly units to 13-14 million.
OLED microdisplay maker eMagin has been developing direct-emission OLED microdisplay (also called directly-patterned, or dPd) for many years, and is considered to be the leading company - the closest one to commercialize such a display. A dPd will enable much higher efficiency/brightness compared to current designs based on color filters.
In the past eMagin reported of several leading companies that have licensed the technology and/or are working with the company towards the design of custom dPd OLED displays for future AR/VR products. In 2017 for example eMagin reported of a Tier-1 CE company that licensed its dPd tech, and in 2020 the company said it started a new consumer-related AR development project for a next-generation display for a Tier-1 customer.
A few weeks ago LG Display noted that it is reviewing a plan to expand the capacity of its mobile OLED production plants, and today LGD announced its formal plan to invest 3.3 trillion Won (around $2.8 billion) to expand pOLED capacity.
LGD will expand its 6-Gen AMOLED production capacity, and this expansion project will finish by March 2024. LGD did not provide any more details about this plan. LGD is enjoying high demand for its mobile AMOLED displays, with Apple one of its major customers.
OLED microdisplay maker eMagin reported mixed quarter results for Q2 2021. Production issues and unexpected manufacturing tool downtime reduced revenues, but the company says it increased shipments to military, medical and other customers. Revenues in the quarter were $6.3 million (down from $7.7 million in Q2 2020). Net loss in the quarter was $0.3 million (but this includes a $2.6 million non-cash profit due to change in value of a warrant liability).
eMagin says it continued to make steady progress on the direct-emission microdisplay project, and remains on schedule to produce full-color prototypes this year. eMagin also reports it is ramping up production of its latest XLE technology (which still uses color filters) and has closed a major design win with a military customers for XLE OLED microdisplays.
Universal Display reported its financial results for Q2 2021. Revenues were $129.7 million, and net income was $40.5 million.
The company expects its 2021 revenues to be in the range of $530 million to $560 million - which will mean a revenue growth of around 30% over 2020.
OLED driver IC developer MagnaChip has reported its financial results for Q2 2021. Display revenues were "negatively impacted by severe supply constraints that continued to deepen in the second quarter".
The company says it cannot meet its customers needs, due to the global component shortages as well as changes in Mangachip's foundry partners' wafer allocation plans. The company continues to work closely with its strategic customers and foundry partners to secure long-term supply capacity for OLED DDICs, being mindful of the fact that global supply constraints are having a significant impact on the OLED business.
Samsung Electronics posted its financial results for Q2 2021, with record sales of $55.2 billion and a net profit of $10.9 billion. Samsung saw higher earnings at its memory and display businesses, offset by a decline in smartphone sales.
Samsung Display says that OLED sales and profits increased because of wider adoption of OLED displays. SDC is worried that supply issues of display drivers may disrupt shipments in Q3, but demand for OLEDs in IT devices and gaming products are expected to see significant growth.
LG Display posted its financial results for Q2 2021, with revenues up 31% from 2020 to $6 billion and a profit of around $370 million. This was the company's best quarter in terms of revenues - as it enjoyed high OLED TV and pOLED sales, an increase in LCD panel price and good performance in displays for IT products.
LG Display says it shipped over 3.5 million OLED TV panels in the first half of 2021, and it is on track to sell 8 million panels within the year. LGD aims to increase its capacity and produce 10 million OLED TV panels in 2022 and 11 million in 2023.
Earlier this year OLED driver IC developer MagnaChip announced that it is being acquired by China-based Wise Road Capital, for $1.4 billion. A few days ago, the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) issued an interim order that blocks the deal.
This is just an interim order, but according to reports it is unlikely that the US and Korea will allow the deal to go through, at least in its preset form. The US is expanding its fight against Chinese companies acquiring technologies. Korea is also worried as MagnaChip's OLED drivers are seen to be strategic to the country's OLED industry.