Samsung Snaps Up OLED Maker for $350 Million

South Korean electronics giant Samsung Group, through its affiliate Cheil Industries and its Samsung Electronics division, has finalized a deal to acquire Dresden, Germany-based Novaled AG, a provider of OLED technologies and materials, according to a Novaled press release Friday.

Cheil will acquire 50% of the company, while Samsung Electronics will control 40%; the final 10% is already owned by Samsung Venture Investment, according to the company. Today's buyout values Novaled at €260 million, or nearly $350 million.

The all-in bet on Novaled shows Samsung's confidence in organic light-emitting diodes, or OLEDs. While commonly used in smartphones, Samsung may be looking to lead innovation in the OLED TV market, according to The Wall Street Journal. Samsung's first OLED TV to hit the U.S. will become available sometime this month; the 55-inch model will retail for around $15,000. 

According to a Wall Street Journal report, the advantage to OLED technology is its energy efficiency and ability to display vibrant colors. Novaled touts its products as durable and power-efficient, claiming that the global OLED market may nearly triple from 2012 to 2017 to become worth $20 billion globally. After paying about 10 times Novaled's 2012 sales for the company on Friday, Samsung might be betting the OLED technology can live up to its potential and differentiate the company's products from the competition.

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