In July 2017, Idemitsu Kosan and LG Chem announced a new collaboration agreement that will allow both companies to use each other OLED material-related patents in certain areas.
LG Chem was producing OLED lighting panels, but in 2015 the company sold the OLED lighting business unit to LG Display is a $135 million deal.
The latest LG Chem OLED news:
LG Chem announced that it has sold most of its LCD polarizer business to China’s Ningbo Shanshan, in a $1.1 billion deal. LG Chem will retain its automotive LCD polarizer business, and aims to focus on "strengthening its competitiveness in tech materials, especially OLED and nurture its OLED polarizer business".
In 2018 DSCC estimated that the OLED circular polarizer market will grow from $428 million in 2017 to $1.27 billion in 2022. The market is still dominated by mobile displays. In 2018 the OLED circular polarizer market was led by Sumitomo Chemical and Nitto Denko, with LG Chem increasing its market share in OLED TVs polarizers.
DSCC updated its OLED material market estimates, saying that AMOLED stack material sales will grow from $951 million in 2019 to $2.69 billion in 2024 - a CAGR of 23%. These new estimates take into account DSCC's reduced input area forecast due to the slowdown in demand cased by the Covid-19 pandemic.
DSCC says that incremental improvements in material utilization and price reductions, material costs per square meters will decline in the future. The unyielded cost of producing a square meter of a WOLED TV panel will decline from $95.21 in 2019 to $56.11 in 2024.
A Federal Court in Australia ordered LG Electronics to pay a fine of $160,000 AUD to two consumers after LG refused to repair, replace or refund OLED TVs that exhibited burn in after less than a year of use.
Under the Australian law, consumers who purchased faulty products are entitled to a repair, refund or replacement - even if the warranty does not apply or has come to an end. The two OLED TVs were bought in 2013.
In August 2019 Universal Display announced that it has established a network of OLED materials partnerships to help commercialize its new host materials. LG Chem announced today that it joined UDC's network and the two companies will work together to co-develop OLED host materials.
Under the new agreement, UDC will supply LG Chem with its phosphorescent emitters, while LG Chem will develop and host materials. The two companies will jointly develop the host/emitter system with an aim to develop a wider color gamut OLED device.
LG Chem has acquired DuPont's soluble OLED technologies and assets, in a deal estimated at $175 million. LG Chem will receive DuPont's entire soluble OLED IP (540 materials and process patents) and all of DuPont's related equipment and R&D facilities. The deal does not include any assets related to Dupont's evaporation OLED business.
LG Chem believes that the OLED industry is moving towards ink-jet printing of OLED panels based on soluble OLED materials and technologies - and it has now acquired key technologies in this area. DuPont has been developing related materials for over 20 years, has been collaborating with equipment makers (such as Kateeva) and display makers and has also developed its own nozzle-printing process.
DSCC says that the OLED circular polarizer market is set to grow from $428 million in 2017 to $1.27 billion in 2022. The market is still dominated by mobile displays.
The OLED circular polarizer market is led by two companies, Sumitomo Chemical and Nitto Denko, with LG Chem increasing its market share in OLED TVs polarizers.
DSCC lowered its OLED material revenue forecasts, saying that the market is expected to grow at a 25% CAGR from $773 million in 2017 to $2.35 billion in 2022 (down from its previous estimates of $2.56 billion in 2022). The fastest growing (51% CAGR) OLED application will be OLED lighting, which will grow from $12 million in 2017 to $95 million in 2022.
DSCC also published the material stack for Samsung's latest OLEDs (used in the Galaxy S9), which you can see above.
IHS Markit says that global AMOLED production capacity is set to grow from 11.9 million square meters to 50.1 million sqm in 2022 - that's a 320% growth in 5 years. Samsung and LGD will remain the market leaders and Korea will have a market share of 71% in 2022 (down from 93% in 2017). China-based OLED makers will have a market share of 26% in 2022 (up from 5% in 2017).
IHS says that the majority of OLED capacity will still be used to produce RGB (direct-emission) OLEDs in 2022. RGB OLED production capacity will grow from 8.9 million sqm in 2017 to 31.9 million sqm in 2022. WOLED (WRGB) OLED TV panel capacity will grow from 3 million sqm in 2017 to 18.2 million sqm in 2022.
Idemitsu and LG Chem hope that this collaboration and patent sharing agreement will accelerate the development of new high-performance OLED materials. Through this cooperative arrangement, both companies will strongly support the OLED business of LG Display - but will also offer the outcome of this collaboration to other display companies.
The Korea Herald reports that Apple is in talks with LG Display to invest 2-3 trillion Won ($1.7-$2.6 billion USD) in LG's OLED production lines, in order to exclusively reserve some of LG's flexible OLED capacity.
The report says that the two firms already agreed on these investment plans, but the details (which includes the investment size and timing) have not been finalized yet. A couple of month ago we heard reports (originating from another Korean news outlet, Business Korea) that LGD is in talks with Apple.