The Wall Street Journal has reported (Paid subscription required) that supplier Samsung Electronics stands to quantitatively gain billions with customer uptake of Apple’s new tenth anniversary iPhone X sales.

Supply Chain Matters has provided prior commentary related to Apple’s current challenges with market availability of the new phone along with the reliance on market competitor Samsung as a strategic partner of some key supply components including the new OLED screen technology. According to this latest WSJ report, both companies will likely be looking toward success in the new model.

The WSJ collaborated with Counterpoint Technology Market Research to determine that Samsung can likely earn upwards of $4 billion in revenues by supplying key strategic supply components for the new premium model iPhone. The analysis was based on an assumption relative to the sale of 130 million iPhone x devices by the end of 2019.

Readers should note that the 2019 time period overlaps potential new product release cycles for both Apple and Samsung, likely to include a second iPhone model to feature OLED screen technology and facial recognition.

Supply Chain Matters has often commented on the relationship among there two fierce market competitors. The reality of Samsung Electronics being a leader in the development of leading-edge strategic components like screen technology continues to bind the relationship although Apple fosters active efforts to nurture alternative sources of component innovation and supplier sources.

In its reporting, the WSJ point out that Samsung itself has maintained an internal corporate firewall between the smartphone division and Samsung Electronics, the components supplier. The publication reveals the internal code name within Samsung for the Apple account as being “LO”, meaning “lovely opponent.”  How fitting.

This ongoing relationship is by our continued view, another great example of the tenet that supply chain does matter, even if it has to include your competitor.

Bob Ferrari

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