Toshiba Buys Panasonic Design Center For Tiny Hard Disks - InformationWeek

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5/12/2005
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Toshiba Buys Panasonic Design Center For Tiny Hard Disks

Toshiba Corp. has strengthened its grip on the small hard-disk drive business with its acquisition of Panasonic Shikoku Electronics' HDD design center.

LONDON — Toshiba Corp. has strengthened its grip on the small hard-disk drive (HDD) business with its acquisition of Panasonic Shikoku Electronics' HDD design center. Terms were not disclosed.

The design center (Fremont, Calif.) will support HDD development at Toshiba's Ome operations in Japan. The facility — and the 50 product design engineers who will join Toshiba America Information Systems Inc. — will also provide engineering support to PC and consumer electronics companies.

"Acquisition of this design center greatly bolsters our global engineering organization and represents Toshiba's commitment to driving innovation in small form factor hard- disk drives," said Scott Maccabe, vice president and general manager of Toshiba's Storage Device Division.

Toshiba is an early small HDD innovator, introducing what was then the world's smallest hard-disk drive — 0.85 inches. It was also among the first companies to announce products that incorporate perpendicular magnetic recording (PMR), which is used in its 1.8-inch HDD scheduled to ship in the second quarter.

Toshiba currently leads the 1.8-inch HDD market with more than 14 million units shipped since its launch in 2000. The company also recently surpassed the 80-million milestone for 2.5-inch HDDs shipped.

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