Smartphones, tablets to lift LED backlight sales: report

By Helen Ku  /  Staff reporter

Thu, Jun 13, 2013 - Page 13

Smartphones and tablets are expected to drive sales growth among LED backlight makers in the second half of the year, after demand for LED backlight TV screens peaked last month, a research report said on Monday.

LEDinside, a research division of market advisory firm TrendForce Corp (集邦科技), identified three potential sales catalysts for the sector: increased LCD TV shipments by South Korean companies, strong demand for mobile devices and a higher touch-enabled notebook computer penetration rate.

WitsView, a flat-screen research division of TrendForce, forecast that the penetration rate of touch-enabled notebooks would rise to 15 percent during the second half of the year.

LEDinside also reported that the combined revenues of listed Taiwanese LED companies last month grew 6.8 percent from April and 23.8 percent from a year ago to a record NT$10.96 billion (US$367.03 million), supported by strong inventory buildup and orders for LED lighting products.

Sales last month rose for the fourth consecutive month, LEDinside added.

In particular, local LED chip makers’ sales last month expanded to NT$4.44 billion, up 6.7 percent from a month earlier and 10.9 percent from a year earlier, with Epistar Corp (晶電) and Formosa Epitaxy Inc (璨圓光電) reporting record sales for the month.

Epistar, the nation’s top LED chipmaker, saw revenue last month grow 15.9 percent from April and 19.42 percent from a year ago to NT$2.22 billion, while Formosa Epitaxy saw sales last month edge up 0.82 percent from a month earlier and 10.06 percent from a year ago to NT$486 million.

Meanwhile, LED packaging companies’ combined sales reached NT$6.52 billion last month, up 6.9 percent month-on-month and 34.4 percent year-on-year, LEDinside said.