MicroLED startups raise over $200 million in the past year

In the past year, microLED startups have raised over $200 million. As some companies (most notably Aledia and JBD in this case) mature and start to build production capacity, the need for funds grows, and we have indeed seen large investment rounds in these companies.

It is great to see these recent funding successes, which will hopefully lead to increased innovation and also initial production. It should be noted that most (if not all) of these financing rounds have been finalized before Apple made its decision to cancel its main microLED wearable project. We do not see Apple's decision as having a major impact on the long-term viability of microLED technologies or on the industry - but we do know that some investors are now hesitant to invest in this market following Apple's project cancellation. 

Read the full story Posted: Jul 03,2024

Reports suggest Samsung and LG are slowing down their microLED business plans

According to reports from Korea and Taiwan, both Samsung Display and LG Display have decided to slow down their microLED business plans. The main reasons behind this are the high production costs of microLEDs and high competition which is seen to lead to low profitability. 

Samsung Display will continue to invest in microLED R&D, but has delayed plans to expand production. LG Display has already reduced the size of its microLED R&D teams and is looking into deploying some of its microLED developers into the OLED side of its business.

Read the full story Posted: Jul 02,2024

HC Semitek installs the production equipment at its 6-inch microLED epiwafer fab in Jinwan

In August 2023, China-based HC Semitek started building its microLED epiwafer production line in Jinwan District, Zhuhai, China. The first phase of the $700 million microLED fab is expected to enter production by the end of 2024.

HC Semitek announced a few days ago that it has moved in and installed the production equipment in its new line. The company says it is on track to produce the first sample wafers in Q3 2024, and mass production is expected by the end of the year. The investment in the first phase will total $275 million USD.

Read the full story Posted: May 31,2024

Kubos Semicondcutors raised $2 million to accelerate the development of its cubic GaN technology

UK-based Kubos Semiconductors announced that it has raised $2 million, to accelerate the development of its cubic GaN technology. This brings Kubos' total funding to $5.5 million, and will enable Kubos to enter the microLED display market within three years through IP licensing. 

Kubos Semiconductors bridging the green gap

In 2023, Kubos announced that it has been granted its first process technology patents and has received its first customer order. It also received an Innovate UK Future Economy Investor Partnerships grant , a 24-month project to achieve 5% efficiency for red microLEDs by deploying the company’s proprietary cubic Gallium Nitride (GaN) process, called KubosLED.

Read the full story Posted: May 07,2024

AUO: MicroLEDs are already mature, we are leading the industry and already commenced mass production

During AUO's recent investor conference call, the company updated on its microLED project and made some interesting comments. First of all, AUO says that it has started to ship wearable microLED display panels at the end of 2024 (that's in line with AUO's previous announcement).

AUO 1.39-inch 338 PPI MicroLED display, (Touch Taiwan 2021)

As far as we know, AUO is working with a Swiss luxury watch producer (like Tag Hauer) that will announce its microLED smartwatch soon. AUO says that it expects to expand its wearable microLED production soon.

Read the full story Posted: May 04,2024

ams Osram announces its new microLED strategy, will mostly withdraw from the microLED display market

In February 2024, ams-Osram announced that it's cornerstone customer (Apple) cancelled its microLED project, which will have dire implications for Osram's own $850 million 8-inch microLED epiwafer factory in Malaysia. Back then ams-Osram estimated that it will have impairment charges of $650 to $900 million and it will also likely to cancel or delay some of its investments in Malaysia.

amd Osram Kulim microLED produdction site

ams-Osram now announced its plans and strategy following Apple's decision to cancel its project. It seems as if the company has decided to pretty much withdraw from the microLED display market, and the only remaining microLED development efforts will focus on automotive lighting products. ams-Osram now believes that microLED displays will primarily play a role in several smaller applications that also will scale slower and later than previously expected. We also believe that microLED displays will take a longer time to mature than some in the industry have expected.

Read the full story Posted: May 01,2024

KLA withdraws out of the display inspection market, another casualty of Apple's microLED decision

Last month Apple decided to cancel its microLED Watch project, which had very bad consequences for many microLED developers. Ams-Osram is still considering its options and it estimates its loss at $650-900 million, while Singapore-based electronics assembly solutions provider Kulicke & Soffa announced that it was also effected, to the tune of $110-130 million as it cancelled its own project with Apple.

KLA Corporation recently announced that it is withdrawing from the FPD market altogether. The company entered this market when it bought Israeli Orbotech for $3.4 billion, developer of inspection equipment for the semiconductor and display industries. 

Read the full story Posted: Apr 16,2024

Kulicke & Soffa cancels its microLED Project W, expects $110 million in charges

Following Apple's cancellation of its microLED Watch project, Singapore-based electronics assembly solutions provider Kulicke & Soffa announced that its own so-called Project W (probably referring to the Watch) is cancelled, following a project cancellation by a strategic customer, likely to be Apple. 

K&S says it expects charges, including impairments, in the range of $110-$130 million, most of it due to inventory write-downs and impairment charges relating to long-lived assets.

Read the full story Posted: Mar 13,2024

MICLEDI closes its Series A funding round to accelerate its microLED microdsiplay development

Belgium-based microLED microdisplay developer MICLEDI announced that it closes its Series A Funding round, to accelerate its development of high performance microLED arrays. VCs that participated in this round include imec.xpand, PMV, imec, KBC and SFPIM.

MICLEDI did not disclose the funding it received, but it did say that total funding in the company to date is nearly $30 million. In 2021, the company raised 7.1 million Euro, and in 2020 MICLEDI raised 4.5 million Euro in its Series-A round (which is now referred to by MICLEDI as its seed round, together with the 2021 round). Following its 2020 round we talked with the company's CEO who explains the company's technology and goals. If our calculation is correct, this new Series A round totaled around $17 million. 

Read the full story Posted: Mar 13,2024

Rohinni shuts down, files for bankruptcy

US-based Rohinni was established in 2013, and focused on miniLED and microLED technologies for lighting and displays. The company, one of the microLED industry pioneers, unfortunately recently shut down and filed for bankruptcy. This 

Rohinni miniLED bondhead deposition photo

Rohinni developed precise placement technology that can achieve speeds greater than 100Hz for mini LEDs. The company has achieved mass product production volumes with its keyboard and logo backlighting joint venture, Luumii. 

Read the full story Posted: Mar 01,2024