All good news for the HB LED market

SANTA CLARA, CA--With nearly 3000 registrants from 38 countries, and nearly 90 sponsors and exhibitors, the Strategies in Light 2010 Conference set all-time records.

SANTA CLARA, CA--With nearly 3000 registrants from 38 countries, and nearly 90 sponsors and exhibitors, the Strategies in Light 2010 Conference set all-time records. It's no secret that the high-brightness (HB) LED market is humming, and Strategies in Light 2010 recognized that hum and added new conference programs such as a separate lighting track to meet the needs of 'luminaire' aficionados and a new Solid-State Lighting (SSL) Investor Forum for venture capitalists and investment bankers, with presentations from 12 by-invitation-only start-up companies and a panel discussion of leading Solid-State Lighting (SSL) VCs.

The HB LED market in 2010 is supposed to surge 53% to $8.2 billion, according to Bob Steele, Conference co-chair, who presented his highly positive market forecast at the conference. His forecast calls for HB LED market growth to $20.2 billion by 2014, driven mainly by the market for LCD display backlights and lighting applications.

Via twitter and Linked in, the industry had plenty to say about the conference and about the HB LED market. "I just returned from my first 'Strategies in Light' conference, and as a newcomer to this industry, I have to say that I was struck by the complexity of this industry," said Jonathan Baptist, physics student at San Jose State, on LinkedIn. "It seemed as if there was a separate group of companies for every part of the process. There were materials companies, thermal management companies, power driver companies, companies that provide testing services, companies that make software tools, companies that make the optics for the diodes, companies that made complete packages for end users, and oh, there were even a few companies there that fabricated actual dies." Baptist wanted to know if this fragmentation was good thing. "You were also looking at one of the few 'large volume' ends of the photonics business, most other products tend to be niches, which means horizontal fragmentation with unique technologies to address each market," replied David Huff, VP, business development at Clear Align. "The other large volume parts [of the optoelectronics market] are things like optical drives and multi-mode fiber optics. Check OIDA for broad market perspectives."

An LEDs Magazine article (www.ledsmagazine.com/news/7/2/18) reviewed the conference presentation by Jed Dorsheimer, principle senior equity Analyst at Canaccord Adams. "Dorsheimer projected a bright near-term outlook driven by the LED-backlit TV market. Dorsheimer predicts that LED penetration in the TV backlight market will hit 74–85% by 2012. He believes that the industry will experience significant under capacity beginning this year and a 70 to 100 billion LED deficit by 2012." The article continues, "Today, Dorsheimer estimates the LED portion of the BOM at $25. He believes that number needs to drop to $4 to enable a $10 retail price for a 1000 lm bulb. Dorsheimer also discussed how the industry might get to lower prices. He sees a move to larger wafers as key."

Next year Strategies in Light (www.strategiesinlight.com) will be held February 23–25, 2011 in Santa Clara. Strategies in Light is produced by both Strategies Unlimited (www.strategies-u.com) and PennWell. Also be sure to check into LED Japan/Strategies in Light (www.sil-ledjapan.com) and Strategies in Light Europe (www.sil-ledeurope.com), which debuts this year in Frankfurt, Germany in September.

--Gail Overton


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