Seagate VP Stephen J. Luczo is worried that many are not seeing the extent of the problems that harddrive manufacturers are facing after the floods in Thailand. The shortage of harddives will be noticed throughout next year and it will be impossible to catch up before the summer.
Seagate has not been as badly hurt as many others, and only indirecly from the floods in Thailand, something we can’t say about competitor Western Digital. Like all other actors Seagate is dependent on hundreds of suppliers where many have run into major problems, which makes the company VP paint a bleak view of the future.
“This is going to take a lot longer than people are assuming, until the end of 2012 at least,” he says. “And by then, demand will have gone up.” – Stephen J. Luczo
In Q4 the industry is expected to experience a shortage of 50 million harddrives compared to the production goal of 180 miljoner, this is largely due to both WD and Toshiba having several large plants still obstructed by water.
Stephen J. Luczo also says that system builders are becoming desperate in their attempts to restock harddrives where Seagate have been offered 250 million dollar in advance for promises of a certain quantity of harddrives.
Among the component manfuacturers that develop some of the cirka 200 parts that a harddrive consist of, the future looks uncertain, not the least since many still have equipment under water. In a report at Bloomberg.com it is revealed that sevearal companies at Rajana Industrial Park, have managed to salvage equipment, but also that there is still a lot left under water. How much of this that can be repaired there is no way of telling right now.
The views of the future for the industry is anything but a good read, but it actually seems graver than many wants had hoped. Prices of harddrives are up 300% and even if stores may lower prices due to lower demands larger harddrives will remain a luxury for some time.