Monday, July 27, 2009

LG to Supply LCD Panels to Mercedes-Benz

LG Display said its display panels will be used in the car navigation systems installed in Mercedes-Benz’ S-Class sedan. / Korea Times

By Kim Yoo-chul
Staff Reporter

LG Display said Monday it has struck a panel supplemental deal worth several tens of millions of dollars with an auto parts maker Continental AG.

Under the partnership, the German tire maker will supply 30,000 sheets of LG Display's 5.8-inch and 7.3-inch LCD panels on a monthly basis to Mercedes-Benz, which will be used for new E-Class sedans, LG officials said.

Continental is a leading international supplier of automotive electronics. In 2007, it took over Siemens VDO. LG Display was also selling its panels to the Siemens unit.

An LG Display spokesman declined to comment on the exact amount of the deal but officials say the deal could be around $46 million a year.

The panels provided by LG Display are high-end products with light-emitting diode (LED) backlight bulbs. Specifically, the 5.8-inch model will be used in low-end models of the E-class, while the 7.3-inch panels will be attached to premium models, according to officials.

It will be the first time for Mercedes to use South Korean LCD panels for navigation or command systems in the German carmaker's latest luxury sedans.

Over the past few years, Mercedes used panels from South Korean manufacturers only for "low-end models."

Sources have said that LG is replacing Sharp and TMD of Japan as the major supplier for Mercedes' electronics devices.

"The partnership will pave the way for LG Display to strengthen our mobile display business. As for further pivotal steps, we will make efforts to expand our client channels," LG spokesman Park Sang-bae said.

The company has been capitalizing on the TV arena. LG Electronics is the biggest shareholder, while some leading TV and PC makers in China and the United States are other major clients. But the company is on a vigorous pitch to expand its client channels to maintain the sustainability of profits.

LG Display is the world's second-biggest LCD panel manufacturer after its rival Samsung Electronics.

The company beat Samsung in the latest quarter in terms of operating profits thanks to stabilizing panel prices and the rising shipments of small- and medium-sized panels.

An LCD panel is the key component for most consumer electronics gadgets from televisions, cars and other electronics devices.

Mercedes-Benz' new E-Class will go on sale in the South Korean market from next month.

No comments:

Post a Comment