LG strikes LED chip deal with Cree

Jan. 29, 2009
Cree will supply LED chips to LG Display for use in LCD panel backlights and will offer technological support for LED packaging to the Korean company.
LG Display, the world's second-largest supplier of liquid crystal display (LCD) panels, has signed a partnership deal with US-based LED maker Cree to secure a supply of LED chips for its flat-screen devices.

The news was reported in separate articles from The Korea Times and Reuters.

The Korea Times reported that LG Display will expand the share of panels featuring LED-backlighting to 50 percent of its total notebook LCD output, according to spokeswoman Jacquelyn Park.

"Although we will receive technological support from [Cree] for LED packaging, LG Display also plans to internalize LED-related technologies," Park said.

Reuters quoted LG Display as saying, "Under the agreement, LG Display secures a stable supply of LED chips, a key component in next-generation LCD products, and receives technological support from Cree for LED packaging."

The partnership was signed in early January. Park declined to comment on further financial details such as the deal size and contract periods.

According to The Korea Times, a similar supply deal was discussed between LG Display and its sister company LG Innotek, an LED manufacturer. However, the alliance was scrapped, said the newspaper, “due to the pressure of investment, profitability and unstable module supply by LG Innotek.”

The Korea Times also noted that Samsung Electronics, another giant LCD supplier, has been engaged in detailed talks with LED maker Samsung Electro-Mechanics to set up an LED joint venture to “jump into the market”.

Both LG and Samsung introduced new LCD TVs with LED backlights at the CES tradeshow in early January.