Amtran in talks with Everlight to invest in an LED packaging plant

Amtran showcased a full range of its own brand Vizio's LED-backlit TVs – the 55-inch LED TV will be priced under US$2,200 in the US, and around NT$119,000 (US$3,640) in the Taiwan market. After Amtran’s successful collaboration with LG Display (LGD) to invest in Taiwan-based LED chipmaker Formosa Epitaxy (FOREPI), Amtran is currently in talks with Everlight about setting up an LED packaging plant to optimize the capacity of the overall LED supply chain and to build an integrated supply chain of LED backlights in Taiwan.

According to industry sources, Amtran’s collaboration with LGD to invest in FOREPI helps to ensure the supply of upstream LED chips, and its subsequent move to invest in an LED packaging plant is to ensure a healthy component supply among downstream integrators. The parties are still in negotiation phase, and the result will be available in the fourth quarter at the earliest. Amtran aims to ship about 2~3 million units of of LED backlit TVs in 2010, an exponential growth compared to some 30,000 units in 2009. As demand surges, Amtran will be collaborating with Taiwan’s LED makers in order to maintain stability in its supply chain.

Amtran Chairman Alpha Wu said that the company’s revenues in August reached NT 5.36 billion, a 16.8% growth YoY and 33% growth MoM, with total LCD TV shipment of 346,000 units. Sales performance in US is very promising, and the figures are expected to peak in the fourth quarter. Wu emphasized that Amtran will be devoted to the development of LED backlit TVs. In future, Amtran will collaborate with Taiwan’s major LED industry players to integrate Taiwan’s best components, such as IC and LED into its Vizio products, and establish a fully-integrated LED supply chain in Taiwan. He added that MOCVD equipment is not immediately available upon order placement –the lead time for these orders may take between six to nine months. In hopes of easing the tight supply of LED chips, Taiwan’s LED chipmakers have already begun to raise capital for capacity expansion.



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