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DisplaySearch notes surge in Q4 '07 LCD TV panel shipments

Posted: 30 Jan 2008 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:LCD shipments? TFT LCD shipments? LCD TV?

The market for LCD TV panels in Q4 showed robust growth. Shipments in Q4 '07 rose 18 percent q-on-q and 70 percent y-on-y to 27.9 million units, according to DisplaySearch in its "Quarterly Large-Area TFT LCD Shipment Report." The figure brings the total TV panel shipments for 2007 to 86 million units, up 58 percent from a year ago.

On a display-area basis, shipments of LCD TV panels grew 91 percent over 2006 as the average TV panel size increased 10 percent. The value of these shipments rose 23 percent q-on-q and 78 percent y-on-y to $11.4 million in Q4 '07. For the year, LCD TV panel sales hit $33.5 million, up $11 million from 2006.

"Historically, slow capacity expansion and tight supply of large panels supported supplier prices more than usual in 2007," noted David Barnes, VP of strategic analysis at DisplaySearch. "For example, the average unit price of LCD TV panels fell only 6 percent from 2006, and the average area price fell only 22 percent. DisplaySearch expects supply to remain relatively tight through 1H 08, helping suppliers sustain good margins."

Market upturn
DisplaySearch reported that strong consumer demand for 1,080p LCD TV sets throughout 2007 contributed to a strong year overall, despite sluggish consumer take-up in the final weeks of the year. Demand for notebook PC displays was also strong. Annual shipments for portable computer applications rose 43 percent in 2007, and Q4 demand grew 45 percent y-on-y for a strong finish.

Some panels designed for PC monitor applications found their way into the LCD TV market, so annual growth of 31 percent for monitor panels overstates the actual demand for desktop displays. DisplaySearch expects buyers will prefer notebook over desktop PCs for the next years. Demand for flat-screen TV and portable PC products worldwide drove total large-area TFT LCD panel (10 inches or larger) shipment growth of 4 percent q-on-q and 40 percent y-on-y in Q4. Total large-area LCD shipments rose 40 percent in 2007.

Click to view Table 1.

Samsung Electronics captured the greatest share of TV panel revenues with sales of $8.6 billion in 2007, reported DisplaySearch. This 26-percent revenue share was followed by LG.Philips LCD with a 22-percent sales share of TV panels. AU Optronics finished strong and increased its TV panel sales 126 percent y-on-y in Q4. For the year, AU Optronics had a 19 percent sales share. These three suppliers shipped 80 percent of all notebook PC panels in 2007, which DisplaySearch believes improved their operating performance.

Table 1 lists the large-area TFT LCD revenues and sales shares for the top ten suppliers in 2007, along with their revenue growth from 2006.

Click to view Table 2.

On shipment basis, supplier rankings took a different turn. Samsung Electronics led the industry in sales partly because it shipped larger displays, on average, than some competitors did. In 2007, the average large display shipped by Samsung was 15.3 inches on edge (assuming a square shape) compared to 14.3 inches for AU Optronics. The Taiwan supplier led in unit shipments, with a 20.3 percent share.

Table 2 lists the shipments and annual unit growth of the top three suppliers from 2006. The PC share includes shipments of panels designed for notebook and monitor applications.




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