Sony, Samsung complete LCD plant

July 16, 2004 – Sony and Samsung said yesterday that they have finished building a major plant for making LCD panels, which are going into a growing number of televisions.

S-LCD, the joint venture formed by the two consumer electronics giants, said it completed an LCD (liquid crystal display) manufacturing facility in Tangjung, South Korea, according to CNET Networks. Mass production of the panels is slated to begin in the first half of next year. The plant is designed to churn out 60,000 panels a month.

The new S-LCD plant is optimized for big panels that can fit into televisions, said iSuppli analyst Riddhi Patel. “It’s going to make the large-size LCDs available at a more reasonable rate,” she said. Partly because of the new factory, the average price for LCD televisions that are 40 inches or larger should fall from about $8,000 to $1,500 by 2008, Patel said.

Sony and Samsung inked their joint venture in April, with each company contributing roughly half of $1.8 billion in capital. The deal, which places a Samsung executive as the CEO of the joint venture, is a sign of Samsung’s growing strength and Korea’s arrival as a tech powerhouse.


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