LG Display moves back into profitability thanks to iPhones and OLED TVs
After several straight quarters of losses, LG Display made a profit during the third quarter of 2020 and its success was in part due to sales of OLED TVs.
LG Display is (according to Wikipedia) the world’s largest manufacturer and supplier of liquid crystal display panels, OLEDs and flexible displays, but the past few years have seen LG’s display arm struggle for profitability for various reasons.
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However it’s now out of the red and back in black after six straight quarters of losses. Reasons for this include shipments for Apple’s new iPhone, as well as the pandemic causing people to stay at home and investing in TVs and laptops, which has spiked demand for LG’s panels.
LG Display expects this trend to continue after posting 164 billion won ($145 million) in operating profit for the quarter compared to a loss of 437 billion won a year ago. The profit smashed expectations by 65 billion won, with the company also posting 6.7 trillion won in sales during the quarter.
There was also an increase in the demand for TVs due to stay-at-home measures, and sales of TVs were aided by increased production capacity thanks to the opening of its OLED TV panel factory in Guangzhou, China. No doubt the increased affordability of OLED TV also helped, with LG’s TV ranges for this year down in price from the 2019 range.
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Supply and demand of LCD panels also improved after LG had stated earlier in 2020 that it would stop domestic production of LCD panels by the end of the year. By the sounds of it, while this plan will still go ahead it will retain some capacity to produce LCD panels.
In other related LG Display news, resumption of business with Huawei will begin once the Chinese company gains the necessary U.S. export licences. This comes after LG and Samsung both said they’ll no longer supply displays to Huawei in September.
There’s still not been much news on the LCD micro-LED displays that were rumoured to be available towards the end of the year. Perhaps the pandemic has put the kibosh on those plans for the moment.