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South Korea: LG to Battle for OLED Market Share

In a high-tech, HD-centric marketing war that is sure to have global consequences eventually, LG Electronics, a patent administrator for OLED (organic light emitting diode)—an emerging HD television and PC monitor technology which is still prohibitively expensive to mass-produce for the retail market—is on the brink of launching its OLED project, possibly within weeks.

The launch of LG OLED is reportedly being interpreted in parts of Asia as LG's initial strategy to "aggressively foster its OLED business as a next-generation growth engine…by converging LG affiliates' OLED patents and technologies…" according to Korea IT Times.

The Consumer Electronics Association in the U.S. recently projected unit sales of OLED TV and PC displays will grow from last year's mere 45,000 units to about 2.4 million units by 2013.

A full-throttle battle for OLED market share is expected to form quickly, since Samsung's own OLED unit began their research and market planning nearly a year ago. The Seoul-based Times reports according to its sources, the LG Group, which recently announced its intent to buy Eastman Kodak's OLED business, will be well-positioned to establish various OLED patents and serve as administrator (in a venture jointly financed by three LG affiliates) by the end of 2009. (Yes, barely two weeks away.)

LG plans to begin mass-producing OLED panels for lighting (not media) by 2011, and grow its marketing campaign in earnest for mass production and sales of OLED TV and signage panels, as well as PC monitors and other applicable products, soon thereafter.