Coherent reports significant increase in MicroLED display system bookings, supplies laser systems to almost the entire industry

Laser equipment maker Coherent says that it saw a "significant increase" in the level of investment and bookings related to MicroLED displays. These tools are going to be used for process development, as a precursor to mass production.

Coherent reveals that its MicroLED customer base includes almost all current OLED and LCD manufacturers and many well-known MicroLED specific startups and display industry integrators. Coherent is offering multiple UV solutions for four separate MicroLED processes - CLA for high performance low power consumption back planes, laser lift-off for customers using sapphire carrier, laser transfer and laser repair.

Aledia raised €80 million towards its mass production microLED fab

Last month France-based 3D GaN LED developer Aledia announced that it plans to establish a 140 million euros LED production fab in Champagnier, near Grenoble in France. Today the company announced that it closed €80 million in funding, out of the planned €120 million Series D investment round.

The lead investor in this round is the Investment Fund Société de Projet Industriel (SPI), a fund managed by Bpifrance. SPI is joined by the majority of the existing strategic investors, including Intel Capital.

PlayNitride starts to construct its 2nd microLED production line

Last month we reported that Taiwan-based microLED developer PlayNitride is planning to raise $50 million to establish its second microLED production line. According to Digitimes, the company secured the first part of the $50 million financing round, and is starting to construct the second production line.

PlayNitride hopes to start volume production in the new line by Q2 or Q3 2021. This new line will expand the company's microLED production capacity by 2 to 3 fold. Digitimes also updates that by the end of 2021, the company plans for an IPO at the Taiwan Stock Exchange.

Elan and Macroblock announce a strategic alliance to develop microLED and miniLED IC solutions

Digitimes reports that Touch screen IC designer Elan Microelectronics has formed a strategic alliance with LED driver IC developer Macroblock, to develop solutions for micro-LED and mini-LED displays.

As part of the alliance, Elan acquired a 7.87% stake in Macroblock. Elan's president says that the new alliance will focus on driver and touch controller ICs for microLED displays in wearable products, and miniLED drivers and TDDI ICs.

PlayNitride to raise $50 million to establish a second production line, first microLED wearable displays expected to ship in 2021

In July 2019 Taiwan-based microLED developer PlayNitride raised $50 million to start trial production of microLED displays. According to a new report from Taiwan, the company plans to raise an additional $50 million by the end of September 2020 to funds it second microLED production line.

PlayNitride high-brightness high-density passive-matrix wearable Micro-LED prototype (SID 2019)

PlayNitride started volume production at its first production line in 2019, for small wearable displays, and the first displays are now being "validated" by customers. Shipments are likely to begin next year.

CyberOptics reports strong traction in 3D microLED metrology equipment

High-precision 3D sensing developer CyberOptics Corporation announced its financial results for Q2 2020, with $16 million in sales and a net profit of $1.6 million. The company says it is enjoying a "first-mover status" in the microLED inspection and metrology market.

Cyberoptics SQ3000 photo

CyberOptics says that at the end of the quarter it received a $2.5 million order for SQ3000 Multi-Function systems for micro LED applications, and additional micro LED-related orders are anticipated during the second half of 2020.

Epistar and Lextar to merge, focus on miniLEDs and microLEDs for future growth

Epistar and Lextar announced plans to establish a joint holding company, effectively merging the two companies.

The plan is to delist both companies from Taiwan's stock exchange and list the new company by the end of October 2020. The two companies will continue to operate independently, but the holding company's main focus for its future revenue growth will be on mini LEDs and microLEDs products and technologies.

Apple, AUO and Epistar to establish a $334 million mini-LED and micro-LED production fab in Taiwan?

According to a report from Taiwan's Economic Daily news, a new mini-LED and micro-LED display factory is under planning in Taiwan's Hsinchu Science Park. The new fab is built by Apple (who will invest $334 million) in collaboration with AU Optronics and Epistar.

AUO 12.1'' Micro-LED display prototype (IFA 2018)

According to the report, the Science Park Administartion approved Apple, Auo and Epistar's plan on February 18. The new fab will act as an expansion of Apple's existing display center in Taiwan.