Planar Systems, Inc. is a U.S. digital display manufacturing corporation based in Hillsboro, Oregon. Founded in 1983 as a spin-off from Tektronix, it was the first U.S. manufacturer of electroluminescent (EL) digital displays. Planar currently makes a variety of other specialty displays. Since 2015, it has been a subsidiary of Shenzhen, China-based Leyard Optoelectronic Co..
|Headquarters||Hillsboro, Oregon, USA |
|Gerald K. Perkel, President and CEO|
Ryan Gray, VP and CFO
|Products||Monitors, Display Screen & Projectors|
|Revenue||$166.8 million USD(2013)|
Number of employees
|Parent||Leyard Optoelectronic Co.|
Planar was founded in 1983 by Jim Hurd, Chris King, John Laney and others as a spin-off from the Solid State Research and Development Group of the Beaverton, Oregon, based Tektronix. In 1986, a division spun off from Planar to work on projection technology and formed InFocus.
In 1991, Planar purchased FinLux, a competitor in Espoo, Finland. This location now serves as the company's European headquarters. Planar's executives took the company public in 1993, listing the stock on the NASDAQ boards Planar acquired Tektronix's avionics display business, creating the short-lived Planar Advance in 1994. Standish Industries, a manufacturer of flat panel LCDs in Lake Mills, Wisconsin, was sold to Planar in 1997. This plant was closed in 2002 as worldwide LCD manufacturing shifted to East Asian countries.
On April 23, 2002, DOME Imaging Systems was purchased by Planar and became the company's medical business unit. Planar acquired Clarity Visual Systems (founded by former InFocus employees) on September 12, 2006, now referred to as the Control Room and Signage business unit. On May 23, 2007, Planar acquired Runco International, a leading brand in the high-end, custom home theater market. On August 6, 2008, Planar sold its medical business unit to NDS Surgical Imaging.
In November 2012, Planar announced the sale of its electroluminescent business to Beneq Oy, a supplier of production and research equipment for thin film coatings. Under the terms of the transaction, consideration consists of a $6.5 million base purchase price, of which $3.9 million was paid in cash at closing and $2.6 million was paid in the form of a promissory note. Planar was purchased by Leyard Optoelectronic Co. of China in 2015 for $157 million. It became a subsidiary after formerly trading on the NASDAQ under the symbol PLNR.
In November 2016, Planar announced that it was to enter a merger agreement with NaturalPoint Inc., which sells infrared point tracking systems for use on CGI movie sets (Optitrack), and home use both for assisted computing (Smartnav) and computer gaming (TrackIR). The merger was finalized in January 2017. NaturalPoint will remain a separate business with its own executive team, customers, and market initiatives.
Planar currently assembles and services videowalls, projectors, and other displays in Hillsboro. Planar's EL manufacturing operations were consolidated into Planar's Espoo, Finland facility in 2002. Additional large-format displays are assembled and integrated in Albi, France.
On November 27, 2015, Planar closed its sale to become a subsidiary of Leyard Optoelectronic Co., an LED display product corporation. With the merger, Planar increased its capabilities to offer indoor, outdoor, fixed and creative LED display solutions. Headquarters operations for Planar remain in Beaverton, OR following the sale.
In addition to its Oregon, U.S. headquarters, Planar has worldwide reach. Its sales offices are located in Europe, North America, and Asia. It has manufacturing facilities in France, North America, and Finland.
Awards & RecognitionEdit
- Government Video Salute 2013 Planar UltraRes Series
- Commercial Integrator BEST 2013 Video Wall Solution: Clarity Matrix MultiTouch LCD Video Wall
- Sound & Video Contractor Most Innovative Product 2013 Planar UltraRes Series
- Technology Integrator Exc!te Award 2013 Planar UltraRes Series
- rAVE 2013 Best New Video Wall Product: Planar Mosaic Video Wall
- Best of Show 2014 Clarity Matrix LCD Video Wall G2 Architecture
- Technology Integrator Daily - ExC!te Award 2014 Planar EP-Series 4K
- Systems Contractor News Installation Product Award 2014 Most Innovative Video Display: Planar UltraRes Series
- Tom’s Hardware Smart Buy 2014 Planar IX2850
- rAVe 2015 Best Indoor Display for DSE: Planar DirectLight LED Video Wall System
- DIGI Award 2015 Best 4K Display Device: Planar UltraRes Series & DIGI Award 2015 Best New Display Device, Large Screen: Clarity Matrix LCD Video Wall with G2 Architecture
- "Planar Announces Fiscal Fourth Quarter and Full Year 2013 Financial Results". Planar Systems. November 20, 2013. Archived from the original on December 5, 2013.
- A History of Electroluminescent Displays J. A. Hart, Indiana University; S.A. Lenway, and T. Murtha, University of Minnesota September 1999
- InFocus through the years The Oregonian/OregonLive Silicon Forest Blog April 13, 2009
- U.S. Project Hobbled by Japan's Lead New York Times, December 18, 1990 Section D page 1
- "Planar Systems gets in step with area trend to go public". The Oregonian, October 30, 1993
- "Planar Inc. maps deal, set to soar". The Oregonian, July 15, 1994
- "Standish of Lake Mills Sold to LCD Competitor". The Capital Times, August 27, 1997
- Planar Systems Acquires DOME Imaging Systems Archived 2011-06-04 at the Wayback Machine Photonics.com May 1, 2002
- Planar buys Clarity for $46M Portland Business Journal July 19, 2006
- Planar’s Acquisition of Runco: No End to the Party CEPro, May 24, 2007
- NDS Surgical Imaging buys Dome Imaging Silicon Valley / San Jose Business Journal, August 6, 2008
- Kim Brown (November 30, 2012). Planar Systems (ed.). "Planar Announces Sale of Electroluminescent (EL) Business to Beneq (press release)". www.businesswire.com. Berkshire Hathaway Co. Retrieved April 1, 2018.
- Rogoway, Mike (November 27, 2015). "Planar closes $157 million sale to Chinese company". The Oregonian/OregonLive. Retrieved 8 December 2015.
- "Planar finalises merger agreement with NaturalPoint". AV Magazine | Pro AV news, analysis and comment from Europe’s leading Audio Visual title. 2017-01-31. Retrieved 2017-02-07.
-  Global Video Wall Market 2015-2019 Featuring Barco, NEC, Planar Systems, Prysm & ViewSonic
-  Planar Introduces Industry-First 98” 4K Touch Display
-  Planar seeks to capitalize on Windows 8 with 27-inch touch-screen monitor
-  Imperial intros 98-inch 4K digital signage display
-  New Development in LCD Flat Panels
- Planar consolidation means 55 layoffs Portland Business Journal, August 16, 2002
- "Form 10-K: Annual Report pursuant to Section 13 OR 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (2010)" (PDF). www.sec.gov. United States Securities and Exchange Commission. September 24, 2010. Retrieved April 1, 2018.
- "Planar and Leyard Merger Complete". Planar Systems. Retrieved 31 March 2016.
-  Planar Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ:PLNR) a Hold: Roth Capital
-  Government Video Salutes 10 Innovative Products at GV Expo 2013
-  Commercial Integrator announces winners of third annual BEST Awards at InfoComm 2013 in Orlando, Fla.
-  Bold Engineering 2013: 30 Most Innovative Products
-  Planar UltraRes Series Wins Technology Integrator 2013 Award
-  InfoComm 2013 Awards: Best New Video Wall Product (tie): Just Add Power’s HD/IP Gear and Planar Mosaic
-  Planar Honored with Most Innovative Video Display and Best of Show Awards at InfoComm 2014
- "2014 EXC!TE Award Winners". www.technologyintegrator.net. NAPCO. Archived from the original on December 2, 2014. Retrieved April 1, 2018.
-  InfoComm 2014 System Contractor Product Awards: And the Winners Are...
-  Planar IX2850 28-Inch Ultra HD Monitor Review: Affordable 4K
-  DSE 2015: Planar Unveils DirectLight Indoor LED Video Wall System With 3.1 to 1.6 Pixel Pitches
-  2015 DIGI Award Winners Announced