CORNING, N.Y., Oct. 28 -- Corning Inc. attributed third-quarter sales of $1.188 billion -- up 18 percent from a year ago -- to an increase in its display technologies segment, which logged sales of $489 million, a 66 percent increase. Liquid crystal display glass volume increased 73 percent.
Wendell Weeks, Corning’s president and CEO, said Wednesday the continued drop in retail pricing is helping to sell LCD televisions.
"While the LCD television market is in its early stages, we believe it will account for 10 percent of the global TV market this year and could reach 20 percent to 25 percent by 2007," he added.
Sales for Corning's display technologies segment were $489 million, an 18-percent increase over the previous quarter’s sales of $415 million and a 66-percent increase from sales of $295 million in the third quarter of 2004. Liquid crystal display (LCD) glass volume increased 22 percent over second-quarter 2005 volume and 73 percent over third-quarter 2004 volume.
Samsung Corning Precision (SCP), a 50-percent owned equity venture in Korea which manufactures LCD glass substrates, increased its volume by 22 percent sequentially. Equity earnings from SCP were up about 35 percent in the third quarter to $114 million versus $85 million in the second quarter. Second-quarter equity earnings at SCP had been negatively impacted by a number of nonrecurring items.
Net income for the Display Technologies segment, which includes results of Corning’s wholly owned business and equity earnings from SCP, grew 49 percent from $243 million in the second quarter to $363 million in the third quarter.
Weeks said Corning’s customers continue to bring their larger-size fabs on line in order to produce LCD TV panels at lower costs. Corning is already shipping small quantities of Gen 7.5 glass from SCP and is preparing to produce Gen 7.5 and Gen 8 glass in its wholly owned facilities in 2006.
Corning's telecommunications segment sales declined 4 percent sequentially to $398 million versus $415 in the second quarter of this year. The sales decline was attributed primarily to lower fiber-to-the-premises hardware and equipment sales. The segment experienced higher-than-anticipated optical fiber volume for the quarter, but this was more than offset by lower hardware and equipment sales, Corning said in a statement. The telecommunications segment recorded a net loss of $30 million compared to a net loss of $13 million in the second quarter. The increased loss in the third quarter was primarily the result of the $28 million restructuring charge, Corning said.
The company said it expects equity earnings from Dow Corning to be about $50 million in the fourth quarter, traditionally its weakest quarter.
Dow Corning Corp., a joint venture of chemical giant Dow Chemical Co. and Corning Inc., this week reported that its third-quarter profit grew 46 percent. Earnings increased to $116.4 million for the quarter, up from $79.9 million last year. Net sales were up 14 percent, to $946.4 million from $829.7 million. Dow Corning emerged from bankruptcy protection in June 2004 after nine years in court after it filed for Chapter 11 amid thousands of personal-injury claims that alleged its silicone breast implants were harmful.
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