Samsung Enters Carbon Fiber Partnership, Signals Move Away From Plastic

Samsung working on Galaxy Note 12.2 with 2560×1600 display?

Samsung Petrochemical, the materials wing of Samsung, has formed a partnership with SGL Group to invest in developing composite materials. Samsung’s plasticky phones may be a thing of the past!

Carbon based products firm, SGL Group, has formed a 50/50 joint venture with Samsung to develop electronics that use carbon composite. Carbon fiber is commonly used in smartphone cases as a way to make phones tougher, more scratch resistant, and give them a better feel. The composites developed by SGL and Samsung would be a mix of carbon and other materials, and could combine increased durability with the affordability of regular plastics.

While the fruits of this partnership might not reach Samsung’s consumer goods for a while, their feel and durability could be greatly improved. So, will the Galaxy S5 come in a mega tough, carbon composite shell? We’ll just have to wait and see.

You can read the joint press release below:

SGL Group and Samsung establish joint venture for Carbon Composite Materials

  • Strategic partnership with a Marketing & Sales JV for joint market development and distribution
  • Target: Introduction of new industrial and electronic applications for carbon composite materials

Wiesbaden, June 20, 2013. Today, SGL Group – The Carbon Company – and Samsung established a strategic partnership for carbon fiber composite materials with the foundation of a Marketing & Sales joint venture. The joint venture partners, Samsung Petrochemical and SGL Group, will each hold a 50% share. The primary objective of the cooperation is to develop new industrial and electronic applications with carbon composite materials for Samsung and the Korean market. The joint venture will operate under the name “Samsung SGL Carbon Composite Materials”.

The cooperation is expected to provide a stable long-term supply of carbon fiber materials for Samsung and promote its use in various Samsung products and applications such as consumer electronics, medical devices and engineering applications. Carbon fiber materials from SGL Group will be preferred by the Joint Venture. In the mid-term, the joint venture will aim for business expansion over the rest of Asia.

Juergen Koehler, member of the Board of Management of SGL Group: “In this partnership with Samsung, we combine our strengths and promote the use of carbon fiber materials in fast growing markets such as digital media. Carbon fiber materials play an increasingly important role in the material substitution process towards lighter products. Our joint venture underlines our strategy to enter new markets and develop innovative applications for our high-performance materials. We are proud to partner with Samsung.”

Yoosung Chung, President & CEO of Samsung Petrochemical: “Our long-term cooperation with SGL Group will ensure the exclusive supply of carbon fiber composite materials to Samsung. We selected SGL Group as partner due to the company’s unique expertise along the entire value chain from carbon fibers to CFRP components. Lightweight materials have become an important factor not only in industrial applications but also the consumer end markets such as digital media. This partnership will position Samsung as a leading player in the development and application of carbon fiber-based products.”

Both companies will combine their core competencies in this marketing & sales joint venture. SGL Group contributes its know-how in high performance carbon fiber-based materials. Samsung Petrochemical shares its experiences from particular application development with the Samsung’s affiliates, which is expected to allow the company to successfully meet the requirements of new industrial products and solutions.

Following the signing of the joint venture contract, which took place today in Seoul, the closing of the transaction is scheduled for July, pending regulatory approvals. Operations of the joint venture are scheduled to begin immediately thereafter. The joint venture will be headquartered in Ulsan/South Korea, at a Samsung Petrochemical facility. The office of the Marketing & Sales joint venture will be located in Seoul/South Korea.

The joint venture targets applications in the markets for electronic products, wind blades, pressure vessels, automotive and household appliances in the Far East. The Asian carbon fiber market is expected to be sharply growing in Korea and China by over 20% per year. Currently the Korean market focuses on prepreg and sportive goods. In the future though, the market is to be expanded to a wider range of industries like wind energy, electronics, automotives and others.

[Via: BGR]

Back to top ▴