Economy South Korean LG Electronics gives up smartphones

South Korean LG Electronics gives up smartphones

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LG brand logo (illustration). – Lee Jin-man / AP / SIPA

LG Electronics, South Korea’s second-largest home appliance maker after Samsung, announced on Monday that it was shutting down its smartphones division, which had been in deficit for many years.

Once considered a pioneer of the Android operating system, LG had in the early 2010s collaborated with Google on the Nexus series. But the group has had all the difficulties in the world to take off its sales, in particular because it arrived late in the market and that it suffered fierce competition from Chinese rivals like Huawei.

In the red for 23 consecutive quarters

It has long been ranked among the top ten producers of smartphones in the world. But according to the specialist company Counterpoint, the last time it had a market share of 3% or more was in the second quarter of 2018.

LG’s smartphone division has been in the red for 23 consecutive quarters since 2015, for a cumulative total loss of five trillion won (€ 3.8 billion) at the end of last year.

Components for electronic vehicles, robotics and home automation

The division “failed to deliver results” against a backdrop of “increased price competition between the various competitors in the entry-level smartphone market,” LG said in a statement.

This closure means that the group will be able to “concentrate its resources on sectors which are experiencing growth such as components for electric vehicles”, robotics and the smart home “, adds the group.

Media had reported talks with Vietnamese Vingroup over a possible sale of the division, but they were said to have failed due to a price disagreement.

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