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Samsung, Sony To Add LCD Plant

Responding to exploding worldwide demand for LCD TVs, Samsung and Sony announced they have reached a tentative agreement to spend $2 billion on a new large-screen LCD plant through their S-LCD joint venture company.

The new LCD plant, which will be the second for the joint venture company, will be a so-called eighth-generation facility, meaning it will be optimized for production of screens measuring 50W inches and larger. It is to be built in South Korea.

Sharp has previously announced plans to build the world’s first eighth-generation LCD factory in Japan.

The plant is expected to begin production in late 2007 and should produce 50,000 panels a month, the companies said.

The S-LCD joint venture company currently produces 60,000 LCD panels a month at its Tangjeong, South Korea plant, which began production in April 2005.

In a joint statement, the companies said growing demand for larger screen flat-panel TVs was the primary reason for the expansion effort.

“The demand for LCD-TVs is expanding and the large-screen TV market is expected to be especially dynamic from now on,” the companies said.