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LED sector loses ground in Sept.

TAIPEI--Sales of Taiwan's light-emitting diode (LED) industry for September fell from a month earlier due to a drop in demand, a research report said Saturday.

In the report, LEDinside, a research division of market advisory firm TrendForce Corp., said the combined revenue generated by all the LED companies listed on the local main board and over-the-counter market reached NT$9.27 billion (US$315 million), down 2.28 percent from August.

However, the September figure was up 13 percent from a year earlier, LEDinside said.

Despite the retreat in overall sales, some LED firms appeared resilient on the back of rising LED TV shipments, in particular after buyers from China built up inventories during the month in a bid to satisfy a buying spree during China's prolonged national day holiday period, LEDinside said.

In addition, solid demand from China reflected China's policy to dole out subsidies on the purchase of eco-friendly home appliances starting from June 1, while the launch of new TV models also boosted buying interest on the mainland, the research division said.

As a result, ahead of the arrival of the Oct. 1 national day holiday, major TV brands in China were gearing up to boost their inventories, the division said.

According to LEDinside, several Chinese TV brands — TCL, Skyworth, Changhong and Hisense — enjoyed sales growths of 17-22 percent during the holiday period compared to a year earlier, while other brands, such as Konka and Haier, witnessed their sales rise almost 10 percent during the same period.

The sales growth of LED TVs in China during the holiday period was higher than the market had previously anticipated, the research division said.

Although the Taiwan LED sector suffered a decline in sales for September, strong demand for mobile devices and LED lighting could become a driver to possible sales growth in the future, LEDinside said.

It said Apple Inc. has launched iPhone 5, the newest version of its smartphones, while other smartphone brands and computer vendors will unveil their new products ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday and Christmas season to stimulate buying.

Under such favorable circumstances, orders on LED equipment used in these new high-tech devices are expected to increase accordingly, but the orders may largely be placed with first-tier manufacturers, LEDinside said.

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