Hitachi, IBM Consummate HDD Marriage

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Tokyo's Hitachi this week made good on its blockbuster play to acquire Armonk, N.Y.-based IBM's hard drive business for $2.05 billion.

As per the original agreement, inked in June, Hitachi paid 70 percent of the purchase price to IBM Tuesday -- the day of closing. Hitachi agreed to pay the remainder to IBM over the next three years.

The new company, to be based in San Jose, Calif., will go by the name of Hitachi Global Storage Technologies and will be managed by an independent team of executives from Hitachi and IBM's HDD operations. Corporate managing director of Hitachi Dr. Jun Naruse has been tapped as CEO for the new company, with IBM's Douglas Grose to serve as chief operating officer.

The companies said the new organization would employ about 24,000 -- 18,000 from IBM and 6,000 from Hitachi -- with major manufacturing operations at 11 locations around the world.

The business should give Hitachi considerable clout in the storage hardware sector. The deal passed muster nearly seven months after it was first announced, but only after clearing FTC regulatory approval last month.

Hitachi and IBM previously received antitrust approval for the proposed transaction from the European Commission, the Japan Fair Trade Commission, Brazil's Conselho Administrativo de Defesa Economica (CADE) and Taiwan's Fair Trade Commission.

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