Top LCD polarizer makers show dominance in 2011

May 3, 2012 — The top 3 large-area LCD polarizer makers — LG Chem, Nitto Denko, and Sumitomo Chemical — are widening their market share (area basis) lead over other makers, achieving 77% market share in 2011, according to Displaybank’s Polarizer Market and Industry Trend Analysis report. Displaybank is now part of IHS. This 3-leader market dynamic will continue for some time, Displaybank reports.

LG Chem held the top ranking, with 27.4% market share. This is down from LG Chem’s 30.7% market share in 2010. Nitto Denko had 25.9% market share in 2011 (27.3% in 2010); Sumitomo Chem. held 23.6% (22.5% in 2010).

Figure. Large-area TFT-LCD polarizer market share by maker (area basis) in 2011. SOURCE: Displaybank “Polarizer Market and Industry Trend Analysis.”

LG Chem has a stable customer in LG Display, and benefits from high TV and monitor polarizer demand. LG Chem has entered the 3D film-patterned retarder (FPR) market, pulling from its polarizer expertise and exclusively supplying more than 98% of the global FPR market. The company is beating out DNP of Japan for FPR business.

Nitto Denko and Sumitomo Chemical both increased tablet PC and smartphone polarizer segments in 2011, and are focusing on developing and supplying AMOLED TV polarizer.

Polarizer prices fell in 2011, with TV polarizer costs especially dropping 1-2% from 2010 levels. Sluggish demand from Europe and North America contributed to the price decline.

Displaybank forecasts that 2012 large-area TFT-LCD polarizer demand area will hit 317.6 million square meters, increasing by 5% year to year (Y/Y). However, prices will fall 5% Y/Y, making the revenue forecast $7.642 billion.

IHS (NYSE: IHS) provides information, insight and analytics in critical areas that shape today’s business landscape. Learn more at or visit

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