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Foxconn Breaks Ground For Wisconsin LCD Plant

Foxconn Electronics has held a groundbreaking ceremony for its new LCD panel plant in Wisconsin, with US President Donald Trump attending the event.


While Foxconn has vowed to invest up to US$10 billion in the LCD plant, the company is reportedly expected to receive a package of tax breaks and other incentives of up to US$4 billion to build the plant.


Foxconn is promising to hire 13,000 workers for the plant in the coming years.


But before kicking off the construction of the new plant, Foxconn has already geared up its efforts venturing into the TV market in the US, according to industry sources.


Foxconn is likely to foray into the US TV market using a dual brand strategy.


After a period of deadlock, Foxconn, now the parent company of Sharp, has resumed negotiations with China-based Hisence, aiming to buy back the selling right of Sharp-brand TVs in the US, according to Chinese-language Economic Daily News.


A Nikkei Asian Review report further indicated that the parties are now negotiating toward having Sharp restart production of high-end TVs, such as those with ultra high definition 8K or 55-inch and above sizes of TVs, while leaving the mass-market small- and medium-size models to Hisense.


If the negotiations go smoothly, the Wisconsin plant will be able to produce Sharp-brand TVs for sale in the US market, the sources indicated.


Meanwhile, Foxconn has recently increased its investments in US-based TV brand Vizio. Two of Foxconn's subsidiaries, Innolux and AFE, together spent US$68.84 million recently taking up a 7.24% stake in Vizio.


After the completion of the new investments, the Foxconn Group as a whole will control a 13.84% stake in Vizio compared to 6.6% previously.


It will turn out to be a good investment as it will also pave the way for Foxconn to ship TV panels or complete TVs from its Wisconsin plant to Vizio in the future.