New 3-D TV line rushed out by LG

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New 3-D TV line rushed out by LG

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From center left, Ro Seog-ho, senior vice president , Choi Sang-gyu, executive vice president, and Havis Kwon, president of LG Electronics’s home entertainment division, unveil a new TV with pop group Girls’ Generation. Provided by the company

LG Electronics yesterday unveiled new three-dimensional TVs a month ahead of its original plan, an aggressive move to get into the market before its rivals.

Havis Kwon, president of LG’s home entertainment division, said LG hopes to achieve over 25 percent growth in 3-D TV sales this year.

“We will focus on emerging markets, the Middle East and Commonwealth of Independent State regions because the Europe market isn’t doing well,” Kwon said at a press conference yesterday at LG Electronics’ Seocho R&D Center in southern Seoul. “We will secure the No. 1 position in the world’s 3-D TV market this year.”

Among the new products, the LM6700 series will hit stores starting next week with 55-inch models sold for 4 million won, 47 inches for 2.5 million won and 42 inches for 2 million won ($1,760).

According to DisplaySearch, a market researcher, the 3-D TV market worldwide is expected to grow by an average of 33 percent every year from this year through 2015.

It estimated the share of 3-D TV sales in the entire TV market will grow to 37 percent in 2015 from this year’s 18 percent.

LG’s rush to release new TVs ahead of its rivals is part of LG Electronics CEO Koo Bon-joon’s management philosophy.

When he was appointed CEO from a vice chairman position in 2010, Koo emphasized his employees must be cold-blooded combatants, according to insiders.

“LG’s strategy of picking a fight with competitors in the 3-D TV market is different from LG’s tradition,” an LG official said. “An aggressive culture is throughout the entire company now.”

In regard to low-price TVs that are selling at local retail giants including E-Mart, Homeplus and Lotte Mart, Kwon acknowledged there was a need to prepare for low-priced TVs gaining popularity due to the economic downturn.

LG argues it has a secure No. 1 position in 3-D TV sales in the domestic market. The company said competitors including Toshiba, Panasonic and Sony are adopting its film-type patterned retarder technology, shifting from the shutter glass technology that arch-rival Samsung Electronics uses.

Ro Seog-ho, senior vice president of LG’s TV business unit, said 32-inch TVs sold the most in the world last year, but 42-inch TVs sold the most in Korea. “We estimate the demand for bigger TVs, including 42 inches and 50 inches, will grow in Korea this year,” Ro said.


By Kim Mi-ju [mijukim@joongang.co.kr]

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