Back in November, Chunghwa Picture Tubes (CPT), LG Display (LPL) and Sharp all pled guilty to LCD price fixing. The US Justice Department announced that LPL and Sharp will be sentenced in mid-December. LPL will be sentenced December 15 according to reports and will pay US$400 million. Sharp will be sentenced the very next day and will be fined US$120 million. The US District Court in San Francisco will be sentencing the two firms. Contrary to what is posted on DailyTech, the three largest LCD suppliers in the world are: Samsung, LG Display and AU Optronics (AUO).
I have been involved in the LCD industry since 2001. In those seven years getting information regarding LCD panel prices has been extremely easy: go to DigiTimes, Witsview or DisplaySearch and you’ll be treated to quite a bit of free LCD pricing information. Every month and sometimes every two weeks. What is there to fix when everyone involved in the industry knows the price?
The brands that procure LCD panels want a certain price range. This forces the the LCD manufacturers to come very close to one another in price when bidding for a project. Do you think for a moment that Dell or HP would sit back, relax and let LG Display and Sharp fix LCD prices? I have a feeling they would be quite perturbed to say the least.
What do you think: is price fixing a possibility in such an information rich and open world?
[tags]Chunghwa Picture Tubes, CPT, LG Display, LPL, Sharp, Display Manufacturer, LCD Manufacturer[/tags]