LG Display is constructing world’s biggest production lines for 10th generation OLEDs in Paju. It is predicted that there will be a rapid increase in supply of large OLED TVs as production cost of OLED panels drops significantly when these production lines are operated.
According to industries on the 6th, LG Display has decided to establish its P10 production lines, which are being built in Paju, as production lines for 10th generation OLEDs. It is heard that LG Display is working with South Korean equipment manufacturer called YAS in developing deposition equipment for 10th generation OLEDs.
YAS had supplied deposition equipment for mass-production of 8th generation OLEDs to LG Display in the past. Based on this experience, it is speeding up a process of developing deposition equipment for 10th generation OLEDs.
LG Display is going to finish construction of P10 by second quarter of next year. Considering that about $881 million (1 trillion KRW) is invested into construction of one production line for 6th generation OLEDs, more than $2.64 billion (3 trillion KRW) is expected to be invested in the future into construction of P10. It seems that LG Display will mass-produce large OLEDs and small and mid-sized flexible OLEDs that will respond to future display markets from P10.

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<LG Display’s P10 that is being constructed in Paju and is expected to be built by second quarter of 2018 (Picture = The Electronic Times’ database)>

LG Display also looked into continuing its investments into 10th generation LCDs as well and this is contrast to how Samsung Display already decided to focus its future investments into small and mid-sized 6th generation flexible OLEDs. Because this is the first time LG Display is investing into 10th generation OLEDs, it really looked into investing into 10th generation LCDs first and convert P10 into production line for 10th generation OLEDs later on.
Fact that enormous amount of cost and time is required to convert production line from LCD to OLED was pointed out as a weakness. Even if LG Display converts production line from LCD to OLED, LG Display needs to respond to issues from new technologies that can occur from mass-production of large OLEDs since technologies of LCD and OLED are completely different from each other.
LG Display’s confidence also played a role in LG Display deciding to invest into 10th generation OLED. From fourth quarter of last year, LG Display achieved golden yields from 55-inch full HD panels and UHD panels. Golden yield usually indicates a yield of more than 80%. Starting from second quarter of last year, LG Display has recorded EBITDA (Earning Before Interest, Tax, Depreciation and Amortization) from its business on large OLED panels.
Industries are predicting that LG Display will make operating profits from its business on large OLED panels starting from next year. However amount of profit can become even bigger since amount of supply increases from certain level of secured yields when LG Display expands its production capability in panels in this year.
“It is true that we requested YAS to develop deposition equipment for 10th generation OLEDs.” said a representative for LG Display. “We have not finalized on investment target for P10 but we will come up a final decision sometime during first half of this year.”
Staff Reporter Bae, Okjin | withok@etnews.com