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LCD TV Production on the Rise

DisplaySearch announced that, according to its latest research and forecast, monthly production by the 17 top LCD TV brands grew 15% from February to March 2011 and is expected to grow a further 6% in April.

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Unedited press release follows:

LG Electronics, TCL, Hisense, Skyworth and Vizio Forecast to Show Double-Digit LCD TV Production Growth from Q1’11 to Q2’11

Santa Clara, Calif., April 7, 2011 — Although the LCD TV supply chain is going through an inventory adjustment, major LCD TV brands are planning to increase production in Q2’11 in order to catch up with expected growth in sell-through. According to the March edition of the DisplaySearch MarketWise – LCD Industry Dynamics report, monthly production by the 17 top LCD TV brands grew 15% from February to March, and is forecasting to grow 6% M/M in April.

In Q1’11, the leading 17 LCD TV brands planned to produce 41.1 million LCD TVs, and are targeting 44.8 million units for Q2’10, up 9% Q/Q. LG Electronics, as well as Chinese set makers like TCL, Hisense, Skyworth and Changhong, are the most aggressive companies, aiming for double-digit Q/Q growth. Japanese brands, including Sharp, Panasonic, Sony, and Toshiba, are planning for lower growth or reduced production due to the earthquake in Japan and the uncertain economic situation.

“Supply chain inventory is at a healthy level due to aggressive price cuts since Q4’10, and new LCD TV models are in the pipeline and on the way to retail shelves,” noted Deborah Yang, Research Director at DisplaySearch and the author of the report. “Our research indicates that LCD TV brands tend to err on the cautious side, prioritizing inventory control and adjusting production plans as needed, in case sell-through in main markets is not as good as expected.”

In February, production by the surveyed LCD TV brands was only 5% less than previous plans, but the March forecast shows a more conservative plan. The 9% growth planned for Q2’11 may be upset by slow sell-through in the main markets and weak demand in Japan. The production forecast varies by TV brands; some leading brands reported double-digit growth Q/Q, but others estimate a decline in Q2’10.

Figure 1: Major LCD TV Brands Production Plan (Millions)

Source: DisplaySearch March 2011 MarketWise – LCD Industry Dynamics

Monthly production activities are influenced by sell-through results and new model launch schedules, and will influence panel inventory and procurement plans. Samsung’s LCD TV production has been steady at 3 million per month for the first six months, with the exception of 3.3 million units in March. Sony plans to maintain its production levels at 1.9 million units from March to June, while LG Electronics plans to raise production from 2.3 million units in February to 2.6 million units in June.

In general, China TV makers’ production will peak in April. However, in preparation for the coming May Labor Day shopping season, Chinese brands, especially Changhong, Hisense, Skyworth and TCL, are raising their production volumes in March, April and May. LCD TV panel makers are increasing shipments to the China market.

Other key findings from the March MarketWise – LCD Industry Dynamics report include the following:

* LCD TV OEM makers also planned to significantly increase their production and shipments in March. The top 7 LCD TV OEM companies shipped 3.1 million units in February and are expected to ship 4.4 million in April. For Q2’11, they are targeting an average of 4.8 million units per month.

* In February, LG Display replaced Chimei Innolux as the leader in LCD TV panel shipments to China TV makers.

* Panel makers are cautious about utilization rates. The global average was 83% in March and is expected to be the same in April, before rising to 85% in May.

* LCD TV panel shipments in February declined 4% M/M and are estimated to increase 22% M/M in March. Shipments are expected to stay at similar levels in April and May, before seeing another increase in June.

* Korean and Taiwanese panel makers have different expectations for LCD TV panel shipments over the next few months. Korean makers are aiming to increase, especially as they have implemented new Ti/Cu processes; Taiwanese makers are planning to stay flat or grow slightly in Q2’11.

The MarketWise – LCD Industry Dynamics report delivers concise, relevant information for decision-makers who need to quickly understand the entire large-area TFT LCD supply chain. Presented in a dashboard format, this report highlights the status of every aspect of the supply chain, from components to the end-market. Keep up with the ever-changing dynamics of panels, brands, capacity, production, prices and more.

For more information on this report, please contact Charles Camaroto at 1.888.436.7673 or 1.516.625.2452, or or contact your regional DisplaySearch office in China, Japan, Korea or Taiwan.

About DisplaySearch
Since 1996, DisplaySearch has been recognized as a leading global market research and consulting firm specializing in the display supply chain, as well as the emerging photovoltaic/solar cell industries. DisplaySearch provides trend information, forecasts and analyses developed by a global team of experienced analysts with extensive industry knowledge and resources. In collaboration with the NPD Group, its parent company, DisplaySearch uniquely offers a true end-to-end view of the display supply chain from materials and components to shipments of electronic devices with displays to sales of major consumer and commercial channels.

About The NPD Group, Inc.
The NPD Group is the leading provider of reliable and comprehensive consumer and retail information for a wide range of industries. Today, more than 1,800 manufacturers, retailers, and service companies rely on NPD to help them drive critical business decisions at the global, national, and local market levels. NPD helps our clients to identify new business opportunities and guide product development, marketing, sales, merchandising, and other functions. Information is available for the following industry sectors: automotive, beauty, commercial technology, consumer technology, entertainment, fashion, food and beverage, foodservice, home, office supplies, software, sports, toys, and wireless.