In essence I think this is a Samsung versus LG patent battle to control the manufacturing (through patents and know how) of the best, most seductive emissive full-color, large-size (and small-size) displays.
It's about the patents, and materials expertise, apparently.
According to reports Samsung was in a bidding war for Novaled with another Korean company Doosan which took the price much higher than $200 million in the last couple of months but those reports also indicate that Doosan has now dropped out of the bidding.
Rick: Good point. But what we don't know is how much Samsung has already pitched into this effort, and whether its acquisition could be meant to block another suitor -- if there's an acquisition actually underway. This could be a bluff to scare off others who want to acquire what the company has developed. We need more info before making sense of this, I think.
Anytime we see a larger company investing in a smaller one, it's easy to jump to the conclusion there's a takeover in the works. It might be. But remember that large companies invest in smaller ones all the time -- not that unusual. So I have my doubts until someone willing to be quoted by name confirms the information. It is reasonable to expect a company official to give a name, even if they're not prepared to release details. I've seen too many deals that were attributed to Mr. Noname that never happened, although this one makes some sense.
If this comes true, this is definitely a classic IP play.
I do remember my meeting in Korea with ex-Apple engineer Brian Berkeley, who became vice president of OLED R&D Center at Samsung Mobile Display Co.. That was a few years ago, but I did know then that Samsung's totally committed to dominating the OLED development and OLED market. Whatever IP they need, they will get it.