Arik Hesseldahl

Recent Posts by Arik Hesseldahl

Western Digital Acquires Hitachi Hard Drive Unit

The number of companies making computer hard drives is dropping by one, as Western Digital–the industry’s largest player–agreed to acquire Hitachi GST, the hard drive unit of the Japanese electronics concern Hitachi for $4.3 billion in cash and stock. Western Digital will pay $3.5 billion in cash and issue 25 million shares to Hitachi, giving it a stake worth about 10 percent of Western Digital’s equity. Steve Milligan, president and chief executive of Hitachi GST, will become Western Digital’s president. Hitachi bought IBM’s hard drive business for $2 billion in 2003. The deal follows an attempt by Western Digital to buy rival Seagate, though, as Bloomberg News reported at the time, the approach failed over concerns that the combination wouldn’t pass muster with antitrust regulators. Seagate also turned down an offer to go private from TPG Capital last year.


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Just as the atom bomb was the weapon that was supposed to render war obsolete, the Internet seems like capitalism’s ultimate feat of self-destructive genius, an economic doomsday device rendering it impossible for anyone to ever make a profit off anything again. It’s especially hopeless for those whose work is easily digitized and accessed free of charge.

— Author Tim Kreider on not getting paid for one’s work