LG to suspend PDP business in near future

By Kang Yoon-seung

SEOUL, Aug. 25 (Yonhap) -- LG Electronics Inc., South Korea's No. 2 TV maker, said Monday it will suspend production of plasma display panel (PDP) TVs in the near future amid falling demand.

"We are internally conducting a study on when we should suspend the PDP business," said Ha Hyun-hwoi, who heads LG's home entertainment division. "We will make an official announcement on the issue in the future."

Samsung SDI Co., a battery arm of South Korea's top conglomerate Samsung Group, already announced last month it will stop its PDP production at end-November and instead focus on its materials and energy businesses.

Industry tracker DisplaySearch predicted global shipments of PDP TVs will plunge to 5 million units in 2015 from 10.3 million units in 2013.

PDP TVs have been overlooked by consumers who prefer liquid crystal display (LCD) TVs and organic light-emitting diode (OLED) TVs, the new target lines for tech firms.

China-based Changhong Electric Co. will become the only major company that produces PDP TVs if LG follows the path of Samsung SDI.

Samsung SDI said it launched a voluntary retirement program last month after it shut down its PDP business. LG said it hasn't decided the full details of its suspension plans, but watchers say it may also undertake similar restructuring.

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