South Korean handset suppliers forecast to grab 25% of Taiwan market in 2004

Dec 31, 2003 Ι Industry In-Focus Ι Electronics and Computers Ι By Ken, CENS
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Taipei, Dec. 31, 2003 (CENS)--Aggressive South Korean handset suppliers recently vowed to snatch up a combined 25% share of the Taiwan market in 2004 with their fuller range of phone models.

Samsung headquarters and LG headquarters recently pushed their Taiwan branches or dealers to boost Taiwan market shares in proportion to their world market shares. In the third quarter this year, Samsung bagged around 13% of the world market, making it the world's third-largest supplier. LG shot the fifth place with a world market share of 5.8% and became the world's No. 1 supplier of CDMA (code division multiple access) phones in the third quarter this year. LG has pledged to grab a 10% share of the world's handset market next year.

Executives of LG Taiwan pointed out that South Korean handset suppliers have a good chance to lure more consumers on the island as Motorola and Nokia, currently the world's top two suppliers, have together lost a 30% share of the Taiwan market. South Korean phones will compete fiercely with Taiwanese wares for this portion of the Taiwan market.

The LG Taiwan officials pointed out that LG had projected to sell 600,000 mobile phones in Taiwan next year, taking up around 10% of the island's market. Samsung has planned to bag 13% of the Taiwan market in the meantime by selling 800,000 phones valued at around NT$10 billion (US$294 million at US$1:NT$34). Added with other minor handset brands such as Pantech, Telson and Innostream through Taiwanese dealers, South Korean handset suppliers are expected to take up a combined 25% share of the Taiwan market.

Throughout 2003, LG sold only 80,000 cell phones in Taiwan, accounting for around 2% of the Taiwan market. Samsung has captured 7% to 8% of the Taiwan market in the meantime.

To come by more market share, Samsung has recently expanded its staff number in Taiwan and planned to market its phones through telecom service providers in the new year.

LG has recently promoted its phones by giving away slim DVD players to consumers who buy its phones, retailed at NT$7,990 (US$235) and bundled with a subscriber number offered by Chunghwa Telecom. With the attractive promotion, LG sold 3,000 handsets in the first two weeks of the promotion.
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