FlexEnable looks ahead to new opportunities and further growth
Chuck Milligan, CEO of FlexEnable
October 12, 2020
This year has and continues to provide new challenges for all of us, and we as a company have had to adapt like any other organisation. I have huge respect and admiration for how the team has handled this, and the major milestones we have hit during this period is a testament to the commitment, creativity and flexibility of the team. Now seems a good time to reflect on the progress and achievements made over the last year.
Right now we have several active technology transfer programmes in Asia, sponsored by major OEMs/Brands to bring our flexible displays and optics to mass production. We have also made some big technical breakthroughs in optical and form factor performance, and achieved important commercial milestones fuelled by our transition from an IP company to a materials and IP company. Last, but not least FlexEnable’s capability to make flexible active Liquid Crystal Optical Films has opened up some new major market opportunities for our uniquely enabling technology platform.
Key technology highlights
In November 2019 we secured the acquisition of Merck’s Organic Thin-Film Transistor (OTFT) materials (including revolutionary and highly-patented organic semiconductors and dielectrics) – these are now known as FlexiOM™. We also welcomed new members coming from Merck which has enabled us to offer our customers an unrivalled OTFT materials set and expertise.
As a fabless company, this allows us to offer a complete solution of materials and proven manufacturing process compatible with licensee’s existing fabs, making it easier for adoption of this technology. It also ensures our continued leadership in large area organic electronics as we can innovate on both the materials and process fronts simultaneously.
We’ve continued to develop our core Organic LCD (OLCD) technology – the lowest cost, most scalable flexible display technology – and to exploit its unique attributes. It’s easy to reel off the advantages of OLCD: conformable, thinner, lighter, shatterproof, low cost, but each of these has value in its own right, depending on the application, and we continue to innovate on that. For example, whilst the conformability of OLCD is what allows it to wrap around surfaces such as smart speakers, or car dashboards, it’s the record-breaking flexibility of the OTFTs that has led to a breakthrough in borderless displays – where edges can be folded behind the backlight to create breathtaking designs for bezel-less notebooks, tablets and TVs. The extreme thinness of the 40µm substrates we use is what has led to a breakthrough in contrast for OLCD of over 250,000:1 using a unique dual cell structure whose total thickness is less than that of a single sheet of glass in a typical TV today.
In parallel we have identified areas where flexible Liquid Crystal Cells, made using our low temperature technology on optically ideal film substrates, will fundamentally allow curved surfaces to actively modulate, focus and steer light, bringing almost unimaginable new functionality to mobile devices, wearables and automotive. Today we are working with some of the biggest brands in the world as we transfer this this technology to mass production - more details soon.
FlexEnable’s OLCD technology is hitting the market at the perfect time – the demand for flexible displays is now here and growing rapidly. Applications include smart home devices, notebooks and tablets, automotive, monitors and TVs, and digital signage.
There’s a $100Bn addressable market across displays and optics. With manufacturing partners already signed up for volume production and major OEM/brand partners designing in our technology for next generation products, this is a very exciting time for the company and our partners.
We are always looking for partners who have a strategic interest in display technologies and disruptive materials for flexible displays and optics and would like to participate in bringing a new technology platform to the market. If you are interested to find out more, please contact FlexEnable for further information at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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