Report: Fujitsu to sell hard drive unit to Western Digital

Fujitsu will sell its hard disk drive business to Western Digital, according to a Japan-based report.

Fujitsu is in talks to sell its hard disk drive business to Western Digital, according to a Japan-based report.

Western Digital is the second-largest hard disk drive maker in the world behind Seagate Technology. Fujitsu's HDD unit is ranked sixth.

Fujitsu would sell all of its plants--including those in Japan, Thailand, and the Philippines--for between 70 billion yen and 100 billion yen (approximately $660 million to $944 million), according to Japan's Nikkei news service.

This would be one of the largest business unit sell-offs for a Japanese electronics company, Nikkei said, adding that Fujitsu's hard disk drive business has been posting losses.

The deal would be finalized by the end of the year, according to Nikkei.

A Western Digital representative would not comment on the report.

Beyond the brutal price competition that is typical in the hard disk drive industry, there is a clear-and-present threat now from solid-state drives. Until this year relegated to digital camera and music player storage, solid-state drives are now making inroads--albeit small--in laptops, particularly ultraportables like the MacBook Air, Dell's new E4200 line, and Netbooks such as the Asus Eee PC.

Solid-state drive suppliers such Intel, Micron Technology, Samsung, and STEC are also beginning to target SSDs as replacements for hard disk drives in the enterprise.

About the author

Brooke Crothers writes about mobile computer systems, including laptops, tablets, smartphones: how they define the computing experience and the hardware that makes them tick. He has served as an editor at large at CNET News and a contributing reporter to The New York Times' Bits and Technology sections. His interest in things small began when living in Tokyo in a very small apartment for a very long time.

 

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