Silicon Works is reportedly looking to expand its clientele by supplying DDIs (Display Driver IC) and touch ICs (Integrated Circuits) to Samsung Electronics and Samsung Display, respectively. Silicon Works is the biggest fabless semiconductor design company in South Korea and it has so far bolstered its business by supplying semiconductor solutions to LG Display. The company is to become a key affiliate of LX Group / LX Holdings — a company soon-to-be-split from LG Group and led by Koo Bon-joon.
Silicon Works has been a key partner of LG Display throughout the years, so the idea that it’s looking to secure Samsung — LG’s closest rival — as a client might seem strange at first. Then again, LG Electronics is reportedly considering exiting the smartphone business this year, and even though LG Display would remain one of Silicon Works’ main clients, the latter company could suffer revenue losses.
Samsung could benefit from a more diverse supply chain
Silicon Works is now reportedly looking to secure Samsung Electronics as a client and supply display driver integrated circuits (DDIs) for the company’s smartphones that are scheduled for release in the second half of 2021. At present, Samsung’s smartphones rely on DDIs supplied by the company’s System LSI Business and MagnaChip Semiconductor Corp.
Meanwhile, reports from the local media suggest that it was actually Samsung Display who began looking at Silicon Works as a potential supplier for touch ICs as a way to stabilize supply and demand and diversify its local supply chain.
It’s worth noting that Silicon Works and Samsung have worked together before, though the basis of their previous agreement was different. Being a fabless semiconductor design company, Silicon Works decided to start using Samsung’s foundry last year.
The Silicon Works-Samsung Electronics / Display partnership has yet to be confirmed though, but more details could emerge once LX Group / LX Holdings splits from LG Group later this year.