Chinese LCD module maker Efonlong was found to have acquired Gen-8 LCD cell production line equipment from Samsung Display’s suspended facilities, according to industry sources on Dec. 19.
Some of the equipment will most likely be utilize for the Gen-8.5 LCD ultra-thin glass board processing project Efonlong signed with provincial Chinese governments in September. The production line in one of the provinces will be completed in 2020 to aim for mass production in 2021.
The first phase investment is estimated to reach around 16 billion yuan (KRW 2.66 trillion). The total amount of investment in the project is expected to reach around 29 billion yuan, with the Bank of China promising up to 30 billion yuan of loans for this project.
The equipment seems to have entered the country in March this year when there was an entry ceremony held at the Port of Qinzhou in Guangxi, China.
Efonlong previously bought used equipment from Samsung Display’s Gen-7 production lines. “At this time, only a small amount of equipment was sold off because Samsung Display had made the sell-off decision in a hurry,” said one industry watcher.
He said that this time around, for the Gen-8 LCD line, Samsung had been more prepared to sell off the used equipment. Affiliate Samsung C&T managed the deal.
“Political factors are playing a role in why China continues to make investment into LCD production,” said another market watcher. “These types of projects can help add more jobs and raise GDP.”
Efonlong was established in 2008 and has been expanding into the LCD cell production business since 2017.
More and more South Korean equipment makers are seeing opportunities in China. In October, Top Engineering signed a KRW 5.3 billion contract with CTO, which is setting up production lines in Henan’s Zhengzhouwith LG Display’s Gen-5 production equipment. Production is to begin in May 2020.
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