The TV industry isn’t complete without the big names Hisense and Sharp.
And you know there’s a relationship between the brands…
Is it that Hisense TVs are made by Sharp?
Or is it the other way around?
Confusing. I know. But I got you.
Continue reading to discover:
- If Hisense TVs are made by Sharp.
- 3 things you need to know about Hisense and Sharp’s relationship.
- What happened to Sharp in 2015 that led to its business relationship with Hisense.
- And many more….
Are Hisense TVs made by Sharp?
Hisense TVs aren’t made by Sharp. On the contrary, Hisense Group began producing Sharp TVs in 2015. That’s because Hisense acquired the rights to manufacture and sell Sharp TVs. The latter was facing financial difficulties back then. But in 2019, Sharp Corp. bought back its rights from Hisense.
Hisense relationship with Sharp – 3 things you need to know
#1: Sharp sells its rights to Hisense (2015)
Hisense and Sharp are both pioneers of the TV industry.
And since both of them have their own names on the business…
It’s only right that we learn a little about them individually first. Starting with:
Founded in 1969, the company was initially called Qingdao No. 2 Radio Factory.
And its name gives away the first device Hisense focused on: radios.
But fast forward…
In 2013, transparent 3D television was invented by Hisense.
And even before that, they were one of the leading TV manufacturers. Not only in China but also worldwide.
Continue reading: Where Are Hisense TVs Made? 7 Things You Need To Know
Can you believe that Sharp started as a metal workshop in Tokyo? And that was more than 100 years ago. I’m talking 1912.
But let’s speed it up a little…
That takes us to 1953 when Sharp made their first TV.
And in 2005, Sharp made the largest LCD TV. Boasting a 65-inch display, TVs have never been the same since then.
However, in 2015, Sharp hit a financial crisis. And this led to…
Hisense acquiring the brand and licensing of Sharp TVs
Although Sharp TVs are well-recognized…
They’re not that appreciated in the US market.
That’s because Sharp TVs are weak compared to Samsung and LG TVs.
On the other hand, Hisense was doing better than Sharp. Unlike the latter, Hisense has a stronger hold in America’s market.
And as the Japan-made TVs from Sharp struggle…
There was no other choice but to make the deal:
Sell Sharp’s rights to Hisense.
The former can’t handle the increased power of its competitors over them.
So, for $23.7 million…
Hisense acquired the brand and licensing of Sharp TVs in North and South America.
This means that Hisense will manufacture and sell Sharp TVs.
Although unfortunate, the 5-year settlement was necessary.
Sharp has been struggling for long. Despite their mentioned legacy in making LCD TVs.
But since 2015…
Sharp TVs sold in America were actually Hisense TVs. They were just rebranded.
An example is the Sharp LC-80UE30U 80-Inch Smart LED TV (2015).
Reading tip: 7 Best Smart TV Brands (According To An Expert)
#2: Sharp’s comeback (2016-2018)
Even though they’d just sold their US rights and brand to Hisense…
It wasn’t the end of Sharp Corporation in the industry.
When I look back…
I see even more clearly how the deal was significant. And how Sharp had a plan all along.
Their crawl to a comeback started in…
2016: A new parent company took over
Foxconn, a Taiwan-based company, took over.
And since then, the financial standing of the company has had a turnaround.
It might not have been immediate…
But Sharp’s measured financial redemption paved its way into recovery.
The next thing that happened puts Hisense into the equation again…
2017: Sharp files a lawsuit against Hisense
So while Hisense has the rights to make and sell Sharp TVs…
Sharp Corp. sued Hisense Groups.
Why, you ask?
Well, Sharp was seeking a way out of the licensing agreement in 2015.
Their statement was they were upset about the current quality of the TVs that bore its brand.
In Sharp’s statement, Hisense was “shoddily manufacturing” TVs under Sharp’s name. Therefore devaluing their products.
Moreover, Sharp finds out about more things:
That Hisense broke the US safety standards for electromagnetic emissions.
On top of that…
Sharp calls out Hisense for lying about the picture quality of the TVs they manufactured.
To be specific, it was about Hisense making false claims about some TV’s brightness.
Sharp calls them out for exaggerating and deceiving customers. And when such lies appear in public, it can hurt Sharp’s reputation.
Here’s a snippet from Sharp’s statement:
“…all of the goodwill built up in them since as early as 1912, are at risk of being destroyed by the time the five-year term of the [license agreement] expires,”
Of course, Hisense denied all claims. They were ready to present their case in court, Hisense stated in Wall Street Journal.
And while that was happening, Hisense says they’ll continue to make Sharp TVs regardless. Because they know they’re in full compliance with the agreement.
Read also: Hisense Vs TCL: 5 Key Differences
2018: Sharp drops the lawsuit
Before any ruling was made…
Whether the federal court will grant the license back to Sharp…
Or let Hisense continue manufacturing Sharp TVs during the 5-year agreement…
Well, Sharp let it go in February of 2018. Hence freeing Hisense of the lawsuit.
#3: Sharp regains its brand and licensing (2019)
Although their uncanny strategy in 2017 didn’t work out…
In the end, Sharp was able to regain its brand and licensing back.
It was 2019 when Sharp reacquired its assets.
And since then…
Sharp Corporation can make and sell Sharp TVs in the US market again.
But this time, they’re expanding.
As they got back on their feet, Sharp started their venture in producing Smart TVs.
Now, they have 4K smart TV like the: Sharp 55-inch LC-55LBU591U 4K Smart TV.
And what makes them even better?
Having Roku as its operating system (OS). Which is one of the best interfaces out there.
There are even people who turn their non-Smart TV into one using Roku.
It’s such an easy system that gives you access to thousands of content to stream.
With that, it’s relevant to say that Sharp TVs are beginning to earn their name again…
The one that they built more than a century ago.