Dominique Numakura`s Newsletter from Japan
by Dominique Numakura
Mar 10, 2003
Booming display industry The color FPD (flat panel display) is the booming business in the electronics industry. Unfortunately, American and European companies have made a very small contribution in the industry. Probably, Japanese, Korean and Taiwanese manufacturers have more than 99% share in the market. They had a slow year in 2001, but they had a strong rebound last year. And it is still growing. The manufacturers do not accept price down because of the strong demand recently. Notebook computer was the major market for the LCD. But there has been more new large markets in the last few years. The new generation cellular phones in Japan and Korea are the typical example. Many portable products such as digital cameras and camcorders are consuming small color displays as the monitors. Another huge application is the flat panel TV. It is more expensive than a vacuum tube display, but it could be a big value for small space in the tiny houses in Japan or Korea. The flat panel TV will be the major in Japan in the next few years instead of vacuum tubes. It is not only LCD device, but also PDP displays, EL display, etc., the whole FPD market will grow significantly in the next few years at least. Most of the manufacturers have a full manufacturing capacity and they have aggressive expansion plans. And it makes a remarkable effect on the relating industries. All material manufacturers such as LC materials, glass boards, filter films, electrode metals, etc. are making expansion plans recently. TAB and flex circuit manufacturers are also expanding their capacity significantly. Equipment manufacturers have been moving to the FPD market from the semiconductor market and printed circuit market to catch the booming business. By the way, it could be the same story that there will be a serious price competition when the business size becomes large in the consumer market. The major FPD manufacturers have been moving the manufacturing sites to China from Japan, Korea and Taiwan rapidly. The other relating companies are also moving. Dominique NumakuraHeadline NewsAU (Major LCD manufacturers in Taiwan) Announced the second price increase in February due to the strong order level. The other LCD manufacturers have been following.Taiyo Machine (Assembling machine manufacturer) Will found a joint venture in China to produce SMT assembling machines for the China operations of Japanese companies. Cobelko Kaken (Electronics material manufacturer) Will increase the manufacturing capacity of sputtering target of aluminum-neodymium alloy for the booming demand of LCD manufacturers.Tokki (Equipment manufacturer) Co-developed a new high productivity evaporation-deposition equipment for organic EL manufacturing. It makes material utilization rate 20 times higher.Shinko Electric (Packaging material manufacturer) Had the certification of QS-9000 for the PBGA substrates. It will help to get the automobile business in the U.S.GSI Creos (Material manufacturer) Developed a new conductive fluorized polymer resin introducing carbon nano fiber. Taiyo ink (Major solder resist vendor) Unveiled a new container package for solder resist ink materials. The new containers are available for recycle use. Matsushita Electric Works (The largest laminate manufacturer) Commercialized a new adhesiveless copper laminate material for high density flexible circuits. The material will be produced by a sputtering/plating process with U-pilex.Dai Nippon Printing (Major printing company) Developed a new low cost unti-reflection film for flat panel display devices. Organic glass market in Japan Major manufacturers do not agree to the price down requests of LCD manufacturers because of the strong demand recently. Futaba Electronics (Display device manufacturer) Developed a new bright FED panel using carbon nano tube materials. Higher than 1000 cd/square meter. Sumitomo Bakelite (Major PWB material vendor) Developed a new smooth surface organic substrate for the flexible organic EL display devices.Showa Denko (Material manufacturer) Will increase the manufacturing capacity of hard discs at Singapore plant to 1 million discs per month.Toppan Print (Major printing company) Will introduce a middle class manufacturing line for the thin tape substrate products. CMK (The largest PWB manufacturer) Will expand the business alliance with Pou Chen in China. They will found a joint venture to increase the manufacturing capacity of PWB in China.Toppan NEC Circuits (Major PWB manufacturer) Will invest 10 billion Yen for the next 5 years to start a volume business of semiconductor substrates.Matsushita Electronic Components & Fujitsu Interconnect Technologies Will co-develop a new concept PWB technology utilizing their ALIVH and MV Technology. Kyocera Chemical (PWB material manufacturer) Will expand the business of flexible laminates to catch booming demand from portable electronics.Murata (Major passive device manufacturer) Rolled out a new one mm thick SMD chip type ceramic filter device for the card type wireless modules.CASMAT (Japan) 10 leading Japanese companies organized a consortium CASMAT (Consortium for Advanced Semiconductor Material and Related Technologies) for the next generation semiconductor technology. JSR, Sumitomo Chemical, Sumitomo Bakelite, Sekisui Chemical, TOK, Toray, Nissan Chemical, Nitto Denko, Hitachi Chemical and Fuji Films.Toyo Metalizing (Flexible laminate manufacturer) Will invest 300 million Yen for the capacity expansion of adhesiveless flexible laminate "Meta Royal" to 500 thousand square meter per year. Hitachi Cable (Major TAB and lead frame manufacturer) Improved heat conductivity of heat sink materials more than 30% for power semiconductor devices.SanyoWill introduce an organic EL panel for the monitor of digital cameras.Hitachi High Tech (Equipment manufacturer) Has acquired the whole business of SMT mounting machines from Sanyo.Matsushita Electronic Components Will restart a ALIVH line to expand the manufacturing capacity of the high density multi-layer boards for cellular phones. Totally 5 ALIVH lines will be in operation to get a larger market share.Sumitomo Electric (Major cable and flex circuit manufacturer) Will in vest 3 billion yen to increase the manufacturing capacity of electronic wires in China.Ube Industry (Major polyimide film manufacturer for flex circuits and TAB) Will accelerate the development and commercialization of new polyimide products for the electronics market.All original news items were written in Japanese. Volunteers are choosing the topics and translating to English for free delivery. We are not responsible for the accuracy of the news. Quick news is the first priority of the headlines, therefore, we can not eliminate all of the mistakes in the translations.