JOLED, which was formed in 2015 by merging Panasonic og Sony's OLED business units, has filed for bankruptcy protection in Tokyo due to financial woes, reports Nikkei.
The JOLED (Japan OLED) joint venture was announced in 2014 and formed in 2015 as a partnership between Panasonic, Sony, Japan Display, and a Japanese government-backed investment fund (INCJ) with the goal to develop and mass-produce OLED panels for small and medium-sized devices – a segment that LG Display and Samsung Display ignored at the time.
JOLED was TCL's development partner for printed OLED TVs since 2020 and LG's supplier for the panels in OLED Pro monitors, the so-called LG 'UltraFine' OLED monitors. To be clear: LG's new OLED gaming monitors use LG Display panels – not JOLED panels.
JOLED panels are also used in professional OLED monitors from Eizo, Asus, and other brands.
One of JOLED's factories in Japan. Photo: JOLED
What's next?At this time, it is unclear exactly what will happen to TCL's development plans for printed OLED TVs but the professional OLED monitors from LG, Eizo, Asus and others will most likely be discontinued.
Nikkei reports that Japan Display Inc. will acquire JOLED's technology development team – around 100 employees – and related IP, but JOLED will close its two factories in Japan and lay off around 280 employees.
The company's debt before filing for bankruptcy amounted to 33.7 billion yen ($257 million).
JOLED never managed to challenge LG Display and Samsung Display. The company was hit hard by the covid lockdown but the fact that LG Display and Samsung Display have both recently started mass production of mid-sized OLED panels for monitors is likely to also have played a role.
- Source: Nikkei