Western Digital has been growing fast and it recently claimed the title as the world’s largest harddrive manufacturer, but now it has dropped the next bomb. WD reveals that is has reached an agreement with Hitachi Ltd. to acquire Hitachi Storage, for 4.3 billion dollar.

Western Digital will pay 3.5 billion dollar in cash and hand over Hitachi GST 10% of stock in WD, which is currently valued at 750 million dollar. The 10% stock ownership enables Hitachi GST to put 2 members on the WD board of directors. WD is expected to cover the purchase through cash and a previous debt of 2.5 billion dollar. The company will keep the name Western Digital and HQ will remain in Irvine, California.

”We believe this step will result in several key benefits—enhanced R&D capabilities, innovation and expansion of a rich product portfolio, comprehensive market coverage and scale that will enhance our cost structure and ability to compete in a dynamic marketplace. The skills and contributions of both workforces were key considerations in assessing this compelling opportunity.” kommenterade Western digitals vd John Coyne 

How the acquisition will affect Western Digital’s product assortment remains to be seen, but main component will now but put back quite a lot as the market shares will play greatly in WD’s favor.

”This brings together two industry leaders with consistent track records of strong execution and industry outperformance.[…] Together we can provide customers worldwide with the industry’s most compelling and diverse set of products and services, from innovative personal storage to solid state drives for the enterprise.” säger Steve Milligan, vd och CEO vid Hitachi Global Storage Technologies.

The current market will not have four actors where Western Digital through its acquisition of Hitachi GST will control nearly 50% of the market, based on the latest market survey from Q4 2010.

wd.market
Data från TrendFocus

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