After a period of back-and-forth negotiations, the sale of CEC Panda has finally materialized, as BOE formally announced on September 23 its plan to acquire an 80.831% share in CEC Panda’s Nanjing-based Gen 8.5 fab and 51% share in CEC Panda’s Chengdu-based Gen 8.6+ fab, according to TrendForce’s latest investigations. The acquisition is expected to be in its final stages by now. After BOE’s B17 (Gen 10.5) fab began operating in 2020, the company now possesses about 21.1% of the global large-sized panel capacity. On the other hand, CEC Panda’s Nanjing-based Gen 8.5 fab and Chengdu-based Gen 8.6 fab collectively accounts for about 4.7% of the global total. As such, if the acquisition takes place successfully, BOE will possess more than a quarter of the global large-sized panel capacity, and this share is expected to further increase to 28% in 2021. Within the context of the global display panel industry, the acquisition will not only bolster BOE’s leadership position, but also increase its influence considerably.
Display panel prices exhibited a remarkable QoQ increase in 3Q20, a rare occurrence in recent years, according to TrendForce’s latest investigations. In particular, prices for NB (notebook computer) panels increased by 5-10% QoQ during the quarter, while the corresponding increase in TV panel prices reached above 30%. Since the supply of large-sized panels is expected to exceed demand by a mere 0.2% in 4Q20, the shortage situation for certain panel applications is expected to persist, meaning panel prices may potentially increase by as much as 10% QoQ in 4Q20.
Given the high demand for display panels, a tight supply situation for DDI has begun to surface in 2H20, according to TrendForce’s latest investigations. As prices of foundry services rose due to the tight supply of foundry capacity, IC suppliers’ DDI quotes to panel makers in turn also began rising in 3Q20. This uptrend in DDI quotes will potentially continue in 4Q20.
On August 17, the U.S. Department of Commerce announced the latest revisions to its Entity List, which now includes 38 additional Huawei subsidiaries. Suppliers are prohibited from providing semiconductor products and components manufactured with U.S. equipment and software to Huawei and its subsidiaries. TrendForce provides the following analyses on the impacts that the expanded sanctions against Huawei have on five tech industries, including semiconductors, memory products, smartphones, display panels, and 5G communications.
TV panel prices have been maintaining their upswing in August, with 55-inch panels and 32-inch panels each registering price hikes of about 10%, according to TrendForce’s latest investigations. IT panel prices have also been gradually rising, thanks to stable demand from end-markets. Most panel manufacturers are thus expected to make a rebound out of the seven consecutive quarterly losses they had previously suffered and finally turn a profit, in either August or September. As such, the panel industry is projected to make a significant improvement in terms of profitability in 3Q20.