LG Electronics taps further into car components, energy businesses

By Shim Woo-hyun
  • Published : Sept 25, 2017 - 17:10
  • Updated : Sept 25, 2017 - 17:10
South Korean electronics giant LG Electronics is moving to increase its investments in vehicle components and energy businesses to equip itself with future growth engines.

LG Electronics first launched its vehicle components division in July 2013 and it has posted sales growth for nine consecutive quarters.

Starting last year, the vehicle components unit has been supplying a total of 11 auto parts and systems, including electric drive motors, power invertor modules, battery cells and high power distribution modules.

Last year, the vehicle components division of LG Electronics posted 2.77 trillion won ($2.45 billion) of sales, up 51.3 percent on-year. It logged 1.76 trillion won of sales in the first half of this year.

“LG Electronics’ vehicle components unit is expected post 3.6 trillion won of sales this year,” said Noh Geun-chang, an analyst from HMC Investment Securities.

Earlier this year, LG Electronics was selected by premium German automaker Mercedes-benz to supply advanced driver assistance systems, camera modules and software for its next-generation vehicles.

On the back of the expansion of the electric vehicle market, LG Electronics has continued expanding the size of investments.

LG Electronics is currently in the main bidding round to buy Austrian automotive light maker ZKW Group, which is valued at $1.2 billion. If LG successfully acquires what is one of the biggest European suppliers of automotive lights, its annual sales volume is expected to reach 7 trillion won, said Noh. 

LG Electronics is also investing in the expansion of production and research and development facilities.

The company said on Aug 23 that it would build facilities to produce electric vehicle parts in Michigan, the US, for $25 million.

LG Electronics will also soon open its R&D complex LG Science Park, where the company invested a total of some 4 trillion won. Starting later this year, the 170,000-square-meter R&D complex will house more than 22,000 engineers from the group’s nine affiliates. 

Meanwhile, LG Electronics also aims to take the lead in the solar power market.

Since 1995, LG Electronics has developed solar power modules, rolling out its first version in 2010.

LG Electronics currently owns a solar module manufacturing facility with a capacity of 1 gigawatt. It plans on expanding the facility by threefold by adding six more production lines with 527.2 billion won of investment. The construction is expected to end by early 2018, according to the company.

LG Group’s plan is to align products and services developed by its affiliates to maximize its market footing in the renewable energy market.

The group, for instance, has brought together one of the largest battery and energy storage systems producers, LG Chem, energy monitoring system provider LG CNS, and solar modules producer LG Electronics to create an integrated business project called a “total energy solution.”

By Shim Woo-hyun (