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News from NET and COM '99

  • Korean TFT-LCD Suppliers See Booming Business in 1999
  • February 9, 1999 (SEOUL) -- Korean producers expect to record a surplus in thin film transistor-liquid crystal display (TFT-LCD) devices for the first time since they entered the market four or five years ago.
    This is in part because Japanese makers have not made adequate investments in their TFT-LCD businesses, industry sources said.

    "Our TFT-LCD business rebounded into the black from the second half of 1998, and we expect a sharp increase in profits in our TFT-LCD manufacturing division this year," said an official at Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd.

    Production rates, which had been running at 60 percent-70 percent in the first half of 1998, are now at full speed, as demand surpassed supply from the third quarter of 1998, the Samsung official noted.

    Also, LG LCD, which recently branched off from LG Semicon Co., Ltd., said it targets 1999 sales of US$1 billion.

    The surging demand for TFT-LCDs is mainly due to the increasing use of the devices for computer monitors as well as the launch of larger-sized notebook PCs by multinational computer vendors, the officials added.

    Most Japanese manufacturers cut their TFT-LCD investments, and this has allowed Samsung and LG to become the top two players in the market, industry analysts said.

    (Maeil Business Newspaper, Korea)

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    Updated: Mon Feb 8 20:35:12 1999 PDT