Sharp is making efforts to transform its LCD business and has sets a goal of hiking global LCD TV sales from an estimated five million units in 2016 fiscal (April 2016-March 2017) to eight million units in fiscal 2017, 10 million units in fiscal 2018 and 20 million units in fiscal 2020, according to Japan-based media reports.
Considering the high production cost for LCD TVs in Japan, Sharp plans to have Taiwan-based Foxconn Electronics, the majority shareholder of Sharp, undertake OEM/ODM production of most LCD TVs at its factories in Slovakia, Poland and China, according to Sharp president and CEO JW Tai who is vice president of Foxconn Electronics. In addition, Sharp plans to set up LCD TV factories in Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines.
In line with transforming LCD operation, Sharp plans to shift production lines for large-size LCD TV at its factory in Tochigi Prefecture, central Japan, to one in Mie Prefecture, southern Japan, and small- to medium-size LCD TV lines to its factories in China and Southeast Asia. The Tochigi factory will be turned into a center for R&D and trial production of 8K LCD TVs.
The Mie factory is also planned to be transformed for production of small- to medium-size LCD panels for use in smartphones, tablets and VR (virtual reality)/AR (augmented reality) devices, in addition, to smartphone-use compact camera modules and related components.
In an attempt to differentiate Sharp-developed smartphones, 8K displays and automotive displays, Sharp has decided to promote its in-house-developed IGZO TFT-LCD technology to other companies, Tai indicated.