Western Digital Snaps Up Flash Storage Maker ViridentWestern Digital Snaps Up Flash Storage Maker Virident
Western Digital (WDC), though its subsidiary Hitachi Global Storage Technologies (HGST), will plunk down some $645 million in an all-cash deal for Milpitas, Calif.-based flash storage maker Virident.
September 10, 2013
Virident, backed by investments from IT heavyweights Intel (INTC), Cisco Systems (CSCO) and Seagate (STX), and investors Artiman, Globespan Capital, Hercules Technology Growth Capital, Mitsui and Sequoia Capital, will be folded into HGST, with Mike Gustafson, Virident chief executive, retained as an HGST senior vice president to run the Virident operation. Gustafson, who took the Virident helm a year ago, will report to HGST president Mike Cordano.
The companies said they expect the transaction to close in calendar Q4 this year. Virident said the deal will speed up its go-to-market efforts by leveraging HGST’s brand, extensive channel relationships and global customer reach. The company’s solutions are intended to help enterprises handle performance-intensive data center applications with PCIe-based enterprise flash storage solutions for virtualization, database, cloud computing and webscale applications.
“I want to recognize and thank our employees and founders for the combination of vision and execution,” Gustafson said. “We are excited to join HGST and accelerate the growth of our business, partnerships and value.”
Steve Milligan, WDC president and chief executive, said the Virident acquisition strengthens the company’s flash position in the enterprise solid state drive (SSD) market.
“We have established a competitive position in the enterprise SSD space and with our recently announced acquisitions we are increasing our commitment to become an even more significant player in this high growth segment,” he said.
In March, WDC completed its $3.9 billion purchase of HGST, a transaction that resulted in Hitachi holding 10 percent of WDS shares outstanding with an option to name two people to WDC’s board. Virident recently tapped Dawn Ruszel, a former EMC (EMC) partner sales manager, as Worldwide Channels senior director, in a move to rely less on its direct sales team and incorporate partners into the sales mix. There was no word either from WDC or Virident as to how the acquisition will impact its channel initiatives.
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