Sony, Sharp to Form JV for 10G LCD Panels; Sony-Samsung Partnership to Remain Intact
February 29, 2008
Following the announcement made by Toshiba, Sony and SCE (Sony Computing Entertainment) to form a chip-making venture, as reported on February 26, Sony recently announced that it has signed an MoI (Memorandum of Intent) with Sharp, whereby the two companies will jointly establish an LCD (Liquid Crystal Display) panel manufacturing venture leveraging the state-of-art 10G technologies, Jiji Press reported.
As per the agreement, the new venture - expected to manufacture 10G glass substrates for 40-inch and larger LCD TV panels - will be established in Sharp's new LCD plant located in Sakai City, Osaka Prefecture, currently still under construction. The new venture, with Sharp holding a 66% stake and Sony holding the remaining 34%, is slated for completion in April 2009. Production is scheduled to commence by March 2010, with an initial monthly output of 36,000 units, which is projected to eventually grow to 72,000 units.
Further details regarding the venture's capital and corporate name were not yet disclosed. Both companies also announced that they will jointly develop materials for LCD panels and modules.
Meanwhile, Sony also stated that the cooperation with Sharp will not affect its partnership with Samsung. At present, about 50% of LCD panels needed by Sony are supplied by S-LCD, a joint venture formed between Sony and Samsung in 2003.