Corning Inc. said Friday it expects its annual revenue to grow more than 50 percent by 2014 to around $10 billion, driven by surging demand for ultra-thin glass used in television monitors and touch-screen tablets.
The specialty glass maker, which was holding its annual investor meeting Friday, is the world's biggest maker of liquid-crystal-display glass for flat-panel TVs and computers.
The company predicts the global appetite for LCD-TVs and mobile devices will drive an anticipated leap in LCD-glass industry volume to around 5 billion square feet in 2014 from more than 3 billion square feet now. It said demand for LCD glass will run between 3.6 billion and 3.8 billion square feet this year.
It posted $6.6 billion in revenue in 2010.
Corning shares rose 23 cents to $22.80 in morning trading.
The 160-year-old company, based in western New York, accounts for more than 60 percent of the LCD glass market and employs 24,500 people. It expects LCD-TVs to remain a favored TV technology in coming years, driven by robust demand in China and other emerging markets and a shortened TV replacement cycle than traditional sets.
Corning said it took back some market share in the fourth quarter as retail demand for LCD-TVs stalled in the United States last year. But research firm DisplaySearch projects renewed demand in North America this year, with shipments climbing 8 percent to 40.5 units.
The market's shift to mobile computing will bring rapid growth of tablet devices in the personal computer space, presenting "an exceptional growth opportunity" for its fast-emerging Gorilla glass business, said James Clappin, Corning's technologies group president.
Hard to break, dent or scratch, Gorilla glass generated around $250 million in revenue in 2010 but soaring demand could boost revenue to $1 billion this year as it begins to migrate to high-end TVs with frameless screens. Sony Corp. said this month it will incorporate Gorilla in a new line of Bravia TVs.
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