Shortly after the HD Guru reported Pioneer’s decision to exit the TV business, a handful of consumer electronics websites have misinterpreted Pioneer’s actions as the death of plasma displays. These stories typically cite skewed statistics or claim companies that never manufactured a single plasma panel have shuttered their plants.

Late last week some bloggers referred to a LG executive’s comments made to a Japanese reporter, translated from Korean to Japanese to English as proof that LG may exit the plasma business. The HD Guru inquired about the accuracy of the Japanese report to an LG executive and below is the company’s response.

Seoul, Korea, February 27, 2009—LG Electronics is one of the world’s leading producers of plasma display panels (PDPs) and plasma TVs.
As a founding member of the Plasma Display Coalition, we are committed to the plasma business and we believe plasma TVs are an important segment in the flat panel display sector. In addition, unlike some current and former plasma TV players, LG possesses core technologies for plasma TVs and PDP modules, giving us unique advantages in the market. We have invested heavily to strengthen the LG brand in this segment and will continue to do so.
The demand for plasma TVs is still growing. Based on this, we have set a goal to sell 3 million plasma TVs in 2009, giving us 19 percent of the total plasma TV market. We will focus primarily on plasma TVs 50 inches and larger, where demand is highest.
To help us achieve our goal for this year, LG is introducing new plasma TVs with advanced features like wireless Bluetooth connectivity and Full HD resolution, along with innovative frameless designs. Additionally, LG is initiating and expanding relationships with both premium retailers and mass merchandisers through proactive collaboration in promotional activities for plasma TVs.
To make our plasma production even more efficient, we shifted obsolete production lines over to solar panel manufacturing in 2008, and increased capacity of our more efficient lines. In 2009, we integrated our PDP module and plasma TV businesses to leverage vertical efficiencies between sets and components and create a stronger supply chain.
LG will continue to develop a wide range of plasma displays fully accommodating customer needs and wants. (end)

LG also supplied (within the release) Display Search’s (a TV industry market research firm) latest sales projections for 2009 and 2010.
Display Search predicts an 5% worldwide increase in Plasma TV sales for 2009 for a total of 14.615 million units and a 6% increase (over 2009) for 2010 for a yearly total of 15.445 million units.

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