Sumitomo Chemical Co. has developed a new technology which can reduce production costs of large-format OLED panels to a great extent. The company has developed a new chemical pigment material for manufacturing OLED panels that targets to cut the production cost to half of the current deposition method. The company plans to enter quantity production by 2019 and sell to panel manufacturers in and outside Japan, expecting reduction of prices for OLED TVs to expand the market. The current deposition method requires expensive equipment and lots of the chemical pigment materials are wasted. The light-emitting elements of red, green and blue are supplied by Idemitsu Kosan Co. of Japan, Merck from Germany, and so on. The new printing method can reduce production costs because it requires less manufacturing processes than the deposition method but has a drawback of difficulty of coating light-emitting pigment evenly on the panel plate, which becomes more difficult when the panel sizes get larger. The new pigment that Sumitomo Chemical has developed is expected to reduce colouring of the light-emitting pigments on to the panel. Sumitomo Chemical said it has developed new manufacturing equipment for the printing method. To develop the new pigments, the company has cooperated with foreign panel makers and JOLED, which was established by integrating the OLED business division of Sony and Panasonic in 2015. JOLED plans to develop 21.6-inch display for medical use by using the new OELD panel produced in the printing method and market this autumn.
Toshiba Corp. on July 11 had a meeting with its main banks about the negotiation of the sale of its semiconductor memory business with the Japan-US-South Korea ally led by Innovation Network Corp. of Japan (INCJ). The top management of Toshiba explained the negotiation is stalemated because the ally has a difficulty on the roles of SK Hynix of South Korea, which seems to have a stronger interest in NAND type flash memory technology than the other have earlier expected because SK is behind Samsumg in the mass production for NAND memory while it has know-how in DRAM production, which lacks in Toshiba and thinks the company has a merit to join the ally and commit to Toshiba Memory’s production more aggressively. Toshiba revealed it has started to negotiate again with Western Digital and Hon Hai Precision. WD has proposed the acquisition by allying with U.S. fund Kohlberg Kravis Roberts (KKR & Co.), INCJ and Development Bank of Japan. Toshiba wants to decide the sale of Toshiba Memory by the end of March, 2018 in order to have excessive liabilities two years in a row which is to lead to the company going private.
Shutterfly is known as one of the world’s largest online retailer and manufacturer, providing image publishing services. HP Inc. recently announced that it has signed a five-year deal with Shutterfly, who has named HP as its preferred digital press provider. Last year, around the same time, Shutterfly had acquired a first phase of 25 HP Indigo 12000 Digital Presses, making its combined order the largest deal by far for HP Indigo. This five-year deal marks the biggest ever competitive win for HP Indigo, with Shutterfly’s decision to make HP its preferred digital press provider and replace presses from an existing vendor. Shutterfly has announced that it will use its new fleet of digital presses to produce a range of high-quality, personalized products and gifts including photo books, calendars, custom stationery, cards and keepsakes. The 29-inch format HP Indigo 12000 Digital Press will enable the production of these products through offset matching digital colour with true photo quality, high productivity, and wide versatility on an unmatched range of media including synthetic, metalized and canvas applications. Sharing his thoughts on the coveted deal, President of Imaging & Printing Business, HP Inc - Enrique Lores said, “We are seeing an incredible renaissance in digital printing. People click on what they like, but print what they love. The power of HP’s digital print technologies opens new markets, applications and possibilities for our top customers like Shutterfly”.