TFT LCD shipments drop, outlook is positive

TFT LCD shipments drop, outlook is positive
Large area TFT LCD shipments dropped three per cent at the start of 2009, with DisplaySearch blaming the slump on slow market demand.

Research body, DisplaySearch recently released a report indicating that large-area (10” and larger) TFT LCD shipments reached 91.4 million units in the first quarter of 2009. This represents a decline of 3 per cent quarter on quarter and 18 per cent year on year. Due to the decline in shipments, large-area TFT LCD revenues fell 17 per cent quarter on quarter and 52 per cent year on year, to $10 billion (€7 billion).

DisplaySearch also revealed details of its survey of panel makers’ shipment targets for the second quarter of 2009 through to the first quarter of 2010. Panel makers are increasing capacity utilisation to respond to growing demand and targeting second quarter 09 shipments of large-area TFT LCD panels of 125 million, up 37 per cent from first quarter 09. If panel makers reach their unit shipment targets, revenue growth is expected to be 47 per cent quarter on quarter.

In the first quarter of 09 Samsung Electronics ranked first in large-area TFT LCD panel revenues, with sales of $2.9 billion, a 28.7 per cent revenue share, according to DisplaySearch findings. LG Display was number two, with $2.5 billion in revenues and a 25.4 per cent sales share. CMO was ranked number three at $1.4 billion with a 14.4 per cent share. In quarter one, 2009 Samsung also took first place in units and area shipments. LG Display and CMO were second and third, respectively. Korea was the largest supplier of large-area TFT LCD panels in the first quarter with 52.2 per cent, while Taiwan’s share remained unchanged from the last quarter of 2008, at 38 per cent.

David Hsieh, vice president of DisplaySearch, said: “We are forecasting that industry utilisation will be 80 per cent in the second quarter of 2009 due to growing orders. We expect that quarter one, 2009 represented the worst of this cycle as revenues and shipments reached recent lows. But just as spring has replaced winter, the outlook is improving and we will definitely see shipment and revenues grow by double digits in quarter two, 2009.”