Corning Launches Ultra-Slim Flexible Glass While Market Shrugs

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Corning

Corning (NYSE:GLW) has announced the launch of an ultra-slim flexible glass named Corning Willow Glass. [1] The launch comes at a time when Corning’s Gorilla Glass continues to dominate as a display surface used in smartphones, tablets, LCDs, PCs and laptops, because of its thinness and high sensitivity to touch. However, the newly launched Willow glass surpasses the market leading Gorilla Glass on many fronts, particularly thinness and flexibility.

We have a Trefis price estimate of $17 for Corning, around 25% above the current market price.

See our full analysis of the Corning stock here

Even thinner

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The Corning Willow Glass is produced using the company’s proprietary fusion process making it possible to make glass that is 0.1mm thick, about the thickness of a sheet of paper. As a result, the glass can support even thinner back-planes and, if adopted, would help make smartphones, tablets, laptops and other display devices thinner.

Flexible

The glass can bend to form curved display surfaces. Also, its strength allows it to be wrapped around structures for all-round viewing. This feature offers several design possibilities in the current line of display devices including, smartphones, TVs, LCDs, tablets and laptops.

Potential to become a market leading display surface

The ultra-slim and flexible features of Corning Willow glass make it a potential market leading display surface of the future. The company is currently providing samples of the glass to customers in display and touch applications. While Corning Willow has currently been launched as an advanced display surface, the company is exploring further applications of the glass in solar and lighting applications.

Gorilla and Willow Glass are part of the specialty materials division in the Trefis model for Corning Inc. The division primarily competes with Nippon Electric Glass (TYO.5214), Asahi Glass (PINK.ASGLY) and AvanStrate (TYO.5220).

Investors not moved

The launch of the Corning Willow Glass hasn’t had much impact on Corning’s stock price. The stock is down 3% over the last month and nearly 30% over the last year. This means that the glass will have to prove its mettle in the next earnings to earn investor confidence and positively influence the stock price.

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Notes:
  1. Corning launches Ultra-Slim Flexible Glass, www.corning.com, June 4th 2012 []