HIMS, a South Korean manufacturer of Fine Metal Masks (FMM) for small-and-mid-sized OLED panels, is expected see a sales boost from its Chinese operations.
Market estimates for HIMS’ revenues this year are at 80 billion won (US$ 67.3 million), just shy of the 90 billion won-plus figure two years ago. HIMS has also managed to reduce its reliance on Samsung Display.
Broken down, first quarter sales are expected to reach 28.3 billion won, which is around 80 percent of its annual sales of 35.4 billion won last year. Quarterly operating profit stood at 10.5 billion won, putting the margin for the period at 37%.
“We decided not to undercut despite our position as latecomers, and now, we are getting orders even though our prices are more than double that of our competitors,” said a HIMS official on May 24.
HIMS is one of the three Korean firms leading the global FMM market. The other two are KPS Corp. and Hansong Neotech, which logged 8.5 billion won and 2.9 billion won of sales in the first three months of this year, respectively. With HIMS upping its ante in China, competition among the trio is expected to intensify this year.
Before, when HIMS was focused on supplying Samsung Display’s flexible OLED lines A3 and A4, KPS and Hansong dominated the industry.
KPS mainly supplied FMM equipment for LG Display’s E6 line, while Hansong supplied the E5 line. The latter also supplied China-based BOE’s first sixth generation flexible OLED plant (B7). The second plant (B11) was supplied by KPS.
KPS and HIMS also jointly supplied to Samsung Display’s AI and A2 plants. OLED inspection equipment manufactured by HIMS, for instance, would be attached to precision systems like XY stages manufactured by KPS. But since then, HIMS began to make stages as well to supply the new products to Samsung.
On three difference occasions last month and this month, HIMS announced that it signed on with Samsung Display’s Vietnamese operation to supply 14.4 billion won worth of post-processing module inspection equipment. Industry watchers interpreted the deals as an indication of the Samsung display-making unit’s preparations to open flexible OLED lines in Vietnam.