The flat panel TV market that is currently booming is set to enter a “twilight” zone and then start declining say Samsung executives. Others say there is at least two years growth left inthe market.
Steve Rust the CEO of Panasonic who is currently witnessing record growth for his companys plasma TV’s believes the downturn is at least two years away, “but it will come” he says.
Mark Leathan Marketing Director for Samsung’s Consumer Electronics division claims that his company is already planning for a downturn. The current leader in the flat panel TV market, Samsung is looking to expand their cooking appliance offering in Australia, as shows like Master Chef prove highly popular and consumers turn to retailers for the latest in cooking appliances.
In Korea senior executives of Samsung who are the world’s “1 flat panel TV manufacturer claim that the “twilight phase” is closer than a lot of retailers think.
“The global television industry is waning after passing through the saturation period” Yoon Boo-keun, president of Samsung’s visual display division, said in Korea yesterday according to the Korean Times.
Samsung expects the global TV market to shrink by 12 percent this year from the previous year he added.
“We are forecasting the global TV demand to reach $97.5 billion in total by the end of this year from $111.3 billion in 2008 as the prices for LCD television sets have been falling by 30 percent a year since 2006.”
Yoon said the rush of LCD TV makers into the LCD TV business brought around such a result, adding that even the industry leader Samsung will suffer from falling profits as the price is the top barometer in gauging profitability.
“But the falling curve is expected to be mild from next year thanks to the increasing demand for LCD TVs with light emitting-diode (LED) backlights,” Yoon said.
TVs featuring LED backlights are about one-third thinner than those lit by traditional cold cathode fluorescent lamps (CCFLs) and have a longer lifespan. They offer more vivid images, with greater contrast and colour range.
With LCD models storming the world TV market, attention is heavily being focused on propelling a greener version that needs less power. Samsung is taking up its LED-backlit model named “LED TVs.”
Samsung plans to sell over 10 million units of LED TVs in 2010 up from an estimated 2.5 million this year, the executive said.
This year’s LED sales forecast comes on top of an initial sales target of 22 million for all LCD sets.
The initial target was below DisplaySearch’s forecast of a 15 percent growth in the global LCD TV market, and Samsung had said it would strive to post higher growth.
DisplaySearch said Samsung was expected to have a 59.8 percent global market share in the LED television market in 2009, with Japanese rival Sharp following at 27.9 percent.
“LED televisions reduce energy consumption by up to 40 percent over traditional LCD screens. If every TV in the world switched to LED, we could save 13 million kilowatts of electricity.” Said Yoon Boo-keun.
According to Steve Rust the market in Australia is still strong “At this stage we are not seeing any downturn but that does not mean it will not happen. There will be a downturn and several vendors like Panasonic are now investing in new categories. We have spent the last 12 months making a significant investment in the digital camera market and we are seeing growth. As for the TV market the downturn is at least 18 months to two years away” he said.