Corning and Samsung Display have signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the government of Wuxi New District, China, intending to establish a $600 million facility to make TFT-LCD glass used in laptops and LCD monitors in China.
Pending a final signed agreement between Corning and Samsung Display, the new equity venture is expected to be formed later this year, subject to receipt of regulatory approvals.
This newest venture will be an extension of a decades-long alliance between Samsung and Corning, and will leverage Corning's LCD glass substrate technology and Samsung Display's LCD display expertise. The new entity will supply LCD glass substrates to Samsung Suzhou LCD Co., Ltd. in China.
Corning and Samsung Display will authorize the new company to spend up to US$600 million to construct a new LCD glass substrate facility in the People's Republic of China. The new company will make the investment in phases over the next few years as stages of the facility are constructed and brought online. With the support of the Wuxi municipal government, the new entity will be located in Wuxi New District, Wuxi City, Jiangsu Province, in China. The manufacturing plant will have Gen 8 (2,200 x 2,500 mm) glass-melting and finishing capability. Construction of the facility will start by the end of 2012, with production expected to begin at the end of 2013, in time to meet demand for the start-up of Samsung Suzhou LCD.
Although new LCD glass capacity is being built in China, Samsung Corning Precision Materials Co., Ltd. (SCP), an equity venture of Samsung and Corning, will be idling some of its LCD glass capacity in Korea.
"As a market leader in the LCD glass industry, Corning has built a highly efficient worldwide supply network, which includes our equity venture companies, to meet customers' needs," said James P. Clappin, president of Corning Glass Technologies. "Shifting a portion of SCP's capacity in Korea to this new facility in China will enable us to provide outstanding local supply in support of Samsung's new panel-making operations there," Clappin added.