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Taiwan LED industry on track to reach $1B threshold

Posted: 16 Mar 2004 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:led? industrial technology intelligence services?

Production value of LEDs manufactured in Taiwan is forecast to cross the $1 billion mark this year, according to the Industrial Technology Intelligence Services (ITIS). Taiwan LED makers produced NT$30.3 billion ($896.45 million at NT$33.8:$1) worth of LEDs last year, accounting for 25 percent of the global LED market.

Taiwan ranks second, after Japan, in LED production in terms of value, according to ITIS, a government-funded market research center based in Hsinchu.

Communications Industry Researchers Inc. (CIR) projects that the global LED market will reach $3.2 billion this year, rising to $5.6 billion in 2008. High-brightness LEDs suitable for outdoor and automotive lighting applications are expected to account for $1.6 billion and grow to $2.64 billion in 2008. Ultra-brightness LEDs are forecast to comprise 22 percent of the global market by 2008.

General illumination will be the hot growth application, according to CIR. The market research firm predicts that sales for this segment will reach $844 million by 2008, with automotive signage and backlighting accounting for over 60 percent of the market throughout the forecast period.

iSuppli Corp. is more optimistic. It projects that the backlighting market for LEDs will grow from about $700 million last year to over $1.1 billion in 2007.

The growing demand for LEDs suitable for mobile-phone, outdoor-lighting and backlight applications is fueling the interest of makers to boost their production capacities. Everlight Electronics Co. Ltd, one of the island's major LED manufacturers, will more than double its capacity for surface-mount LEDs from 250 million units to 600 million units.

Ledtech Electronics Corp. targets a 20 percent sales growth this year to NT$909 million ($26.89 million). It plans to quadruple its monthly capacity for surface-mount LEDs this year to 20 million units as it veers away from the industrial-instrument to the consumer-electronics segment. "We must adjust our focus. Consumer electronics such as mobile phones, digital cameras and PDAs demonstrate a strong demand," announced Ho Yu-yuan, spokesperson.

Para Light Electronics Co. Ltd, which caters to the mobile-phone market, is increasing its output of super-bright LEDs. The company has a utilization rate of over 90 percent on its monthly capacity of 150 million LED lamps and 15 million LED displays.

Focused on automotive-lighting, outdoor-lighting and backlight applications, Huey Jann Electronics Ind. Co. will double its capacity to 140 million units, said Yang Chihlung, vice president. More than 80 percent of the company's LEDs are super bright; its major products are blue and white LEDs.

Huey Jann racked up $35 million to $40 million in sales last year, averaging monthly sales of roughly $3 million. Yang expects a better sales performance this year. It exports mainly to the U.S. and Europe, which account for 60 percent of its total sales turnover.

Against a backdrop of rising production, Alan Huang, VP of Para Light, expects an oversupply, which may depress prices by 5 to 10 percent. Yang of Huey Jann, however, is confident that prices will stay unchanged.

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