Western Digital will get a disk drive facility in Thailand, while Toshiba will acquire from WD manufacturing equipment for 3.5-inch HDDs for use in desktop PCs and other consumer applications.
on Feb. 28 said that it has arranged a trade of sorts with hard disk drive (HDD)
manufacturer Western Digital.
will acquire a portion of WD's 3.5-inch hard-drive manufacturing equipment and
some related intellectual property. As part of the transaction, the Japanese
company will transfer its wholly owned Thailand-based HDD manufacturing
subsidiary over to WD. Shares of stock from both companies are also involved in
details of the arrangement were not made available.
terms of the agreement, Toshiba will acquire from Western Digital manufacturing
equipment for 3.5-inch HDDs for use in desktop PCs and other consumer
applications along with manufacturing equipment for near-line HDDs for server
is taking a risk here in taking over the Thailand factory. Last
fall's record-setting monsoon season in the Southeast Asia country
a number of HDD manufacturing facilities, and some of them have yet to come
back up online.
acquired Fujitsu Limited's HDD business in 2009
, expanding its product
portfolio of small-form-factor HDDs for mobile applications with Fujitsu's
enterprise HDDs. Since then, the company has developed a lineup of new storage
products for enterprise applications.
July 2011, Toshiba unified its semiconductor and storage products divisionscovering
NAND flash memories, solid-state drives (SSDs) and HDDspositioning itself to
carry out coordinated sales promotions to a wide range of customers.
purchase of part of Western Digital's 3.5-inch HDD manufacturing equipmentand
with it the capability to produce 3.5-inch HDDs for desktop PCs, DVRs and other
consumer applicationswill expand Toshiba's portfolio and enable the company to
supply products covering all segments of the HDD market, Toshiba said.
will also expand Toshiba's supply capacity in the market for near-line HDDs,
which is expected to expand with the continuing growth of the server market,
further reinforcing a strategic segment of the company's HDD business.
deal is interesting in one aspect because 3.5-inch HDDs are seen by a large
portion of the market as old-school IT. Demand for newer, faster, 2.5-inch disk
drives is on the rise, as well as for solid-state disks. However, there are
hundreds of millions of 3.5-inch drives currently in production, and
replacements for them will be needed for years to come.
and Western Digital aim to complete the acquisition and transfer by the end of
March after obtaining approval from the relevant authorities.
Chris Preimesberger is Editor of Features and Analysis at eWEEK. Twitter: editingwhiz.