Universal Display (UDC) is an OLED research company, and one of the field's pioneers. UDC is involved in OLED IP, and holds many patent related to the commercialization of phosphorescent based OLEDs and also flexible, transparent and stacked OLEDs - for both display and lighting applications. The company offers both emitting and host materials.
UDC licenses its OLED production IP, and also sells OLED chemicals. UDC lists Samsung, LG, Pioneer, Panasonic Idemitsu OLED lighting and Konica Minolta as its licensees. UDC is working with many other companies, including Sony, DuPont and Novaled. Back in 2009 UDC claimed that "virtually All AMOLEDs on the market use our technology".
UDC trades in the NASDAQ (ticker: OLED). We posted a Q&A article with the company's director of communication in April 2014.
The latest UDC news:
Universal Display reported its financial results for Q4 2017. Revenues reached a record $115.9 million, up 55% from $74.6 million in Q4 2016. Revenues from material sales were $59.8 million (up 105% from $29.2 million in Q4 2016). Net income was $57.9 million (up from $23.1 million in Q4 2016).
UDC concluded a very successful 2017. Revenues were $335.6 million (up 68% from $198.9 in 2016) and net income was $103.9 million (up from $48.1 million in 2016). Net income included a onetime charge of $11.5 million from the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. Net cash generated in 2017 was $133 million.
Display Supply Chain Consultants (DSCC) says that OLED material revenues grew 43% to reach $869 million in 2017. DSCC expects the OLED material market to grow at a 24% CAGR until 2022, when the market will reach $2.56 billion.
The small/medium display market accounts to about 59% of the total OLED material market, and this will continue until 2022. For the TV market, DSCC expects ink-jet printing to enable producers to make lower the material costs of OLED TV production, and OLED TV materials will grow at a rate of 23%, from $344 in 2017 to $963 million in 2022.
Universal Display announced that it has signed long-term OLED material supply and license agreements with Samsung Display. UDC will continue to supply its PHOLED phosphorescent OLED materials and technology to Samsung Display for use in its OLED displays. The agreements are scheduled to run through December 31, 2022, and may be extended for an additional two-year period.
UDC did not disclose the financial terms of these new agreements, but we do know that Samsung will pay a license fee throughout the agreement period. The previous UDC-SDC agreement ended on December 31st 2017, but for the past month and a half the two companies still conducted business of course as SDC's OLED production was not halted.
Universal Display announced that Visionox (GVO) signed an OLED evaluation agreement. Under this agreement, UDC will supply GVO with its phosphorescent OLED materials for display applications. UDC did not provide any more details or financial terms.
Visionox started mass producing AMOLED panels in June 2015, at the company's Gen-5.5 AMOLED line in Kunshan. Visionox is also constructing a $4.5 billion 6-Gen production line in Hebei that will have a monthly capacity of 30,000 substrates, and will be mainly used to produce flexible AMOLEDs. Production should begin in mid-2018.
Universal Display announced today that Sharp has signed an extended and updated evaluation agreement. Under this new agreement, UDC will supply its phosphorescent OLED materials and technology to Sharp Corporation for use in the Company’s OLED displays. Details and financial terms of the agreement have not been disclosed.
Sharp recently confirmed that the company aims to start commercial OLED production in Q1 2018 in its Osaka fab and will introduce new smartphones with its own OLED in June or July of 2018. In October 2016 Sharp announced that it will invest $570 million and build OLED pilot lines at its plants in Osaka and in the Mie Prefecture.
In August 2011 Samsung signed a long-term license agreement with Universal Display which allowed Samsung to acquire and use UDC's patented phosphorescent OLED materials. That important agreement (which generated hundreds of millions in revenues for UDC over the years) expired on December 31, 2017.
UDC announced yesterday that it is in on-going discussions regarding a formal long-term extension of these agreements (the patent license agreement and the OLED material purchase agreement). UDC expects SDC to continue buying materials during these discussions. No time frame has been established for the completion of these discussions.
Universal Display announced today that Royole has signed an OLED evaluation agreement. UDC will collaborate with Royole and supply its proprietary UniversalPHOLED phosphorescent OLED materials and technology for Royole’s display applications.
UDC did not disclose any more details or the financial terms of the agreement. Royole is constructing a 5.5-Gen (Royole calls it a Quasi-6-Gen) flexible OLED production facility in Shenzhen, China. The new fab is scheduled to begin operation in 2018 and will have a monthly capacity of 45,000 substrates.
Universal Display announced that it has signed long-term OLED agreements with BOE Technology Group. Under these agreements, UDC will supply phosphorescent OLED materials to BOE. UDC and BOE signed their first agreement in 2014 and it is great to see these evolve into long-term agreements.
BOE started to produce flexible OLED displays at its Chengdu B7 6-Gen fab in October 2017. BOE's B7 fab is the company's first flexible AMOLED line and actual real mass production will probably begin at about Q1 2018. The full capacity is 48,000 substrates per month, but this will only be achieved in the first half of 2019.
Universal Display reported its financial results for Q3 2017. Revenues in the quarter reached $61.7 million, up 104% from Q3 2016 ($30.2 million) driven by strong material sales and also increased royalty and license fees. Net income in the quarter was $13.5 million (up $15 million from a $1.5 million loss in Q2 2016).
UDC's material sales increased 100% from Q3 2016 to reach $12 million, while royalties and license fees increased 131% to reach $12 million. UDC increased its revenue guidance for the full year 2017 to $310 million to $320 million. Revenues in the first nine months were $219.8 million.
In February 2017 Universal Display announced that the company will invest $15 million in PPG Industries' OLED facility in Barberton, Ohio. PPG will double its commercial production capacity of UDC's phosphorescent OLED emitter materials. The capacity expansion was scheduled to be completed in the third quarter 2017, and indeed today UDC announced that the expansion project is complete.
PPG Industries and UDC established a strategic relationship in 2000, and PPG is the exclusive producer of UDC's PHOLED emitter materials. In 2013, the two companies opened this OLED production plant in Barbertron as demand for OLED materials increased.