Samsung to buy German OLED company Novaled

Korean consumer electronics giant Samsung, in conjunction with its affiliates, plans to acquire German company Novaled, which makes organic light emitting diode or OLED technology. OLEDs are used in next-gen displays for cell phones and televisions, and the tech is both more energy efficient and also delivers vivid colors and images.

Samsung and its affiliates are paying around $350 million plus a potential $40 million payment based on performance for Novaled. Novaled’s investors include eCAPITAL, TechnoStart, Omnes Capital, TechFund Europe, Innovation Capital, as well as Samsung Ventures, which invested in 2011.

sony_prototype_flexible_oled_display_rollup_pencilSamsung has been shipping phones with its Super AMOLED Plus screen technology since early 2011. As GigaOM’s Kevin Tofel noted, the screen tech is better seen than described and the display colors are extremely vivid when compared to any other screens.

Novaled was founded in 2001 as a spin-off of the Dresden University of Technology and the Fraunhofer Institute of Dresden. In 2012 Novaled delivered revenues of around $35 million.

The global OLED market could grow from $6.8 billion in 2012 to $20 billion in 2017, according to DisplaySearch.