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Western Digital to acquire SanDisk for US$19 billion

By Chester Labaco & Kenny Yeo - on 22 Oct 2015, 9:51am

Western Digital to acquire SanDisk for US$19 billion

Hard disk drive makers have thus far been bullish about their prospects, insisting that hard disk drives will always have a place in the future despite the advances made by flash-based storage solutions, in particular SSDs. But the past few years have been tough on hard disk drive makers as SSDs continue to fall in price and increase in capacity and performance.

In a sign that hard disk drives makers are finally getting serious about flash memory, Western Digital has just announced that it will acquire SanDisk for US$19 billion using a combination of cash and stock. The deal is said to make Western Digital the "broadest supplier of data-storage components."

The move is said to be spurred by increasing demand for flash storage. Today, even enterprises are turning to flash as they offer speed and power advantages that traditional hard disk drives cannot hope to match, much less beat.

And according to additional reports, the market for hard disk drives will continue to shrink, while the market for flash storage looks set to continue on a path of growth.

The acquisition of SanDisk will give Western Digital access to SanDisk's flash producing capabilities, which it shares in a joint venture with Toshiba. Together, SanDisk and Toshiba are one of the world's top suppliers of flash-based NAND memory.

Following this deal, it will be interesting to see how perennial rivals, Seagate, react. It looks like it's going to be exciting times ahead for the storage industry

Source: Wall Street Journal