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Western Digital bounces back with a vengeance

Lucas Mearian | July 27, 2012
After suffering the loss of some of its major hard drive manufacturing facilities in Thailand due to flooding, WD announced it's back in the black with record financial results for 2012.

Western Digital was hardest hit among disk drive manufacturers with plants in Thailand and an earthquake that rocked Japan. Toshiba, for example, reported flooding in one semiconductor plant, but WD saw about 75% of its production shut down, according to some industry estimates.

After the Thai floods, Seagate claimed 38% of HDD market share, compared with Western Digital's 23%, according to iSuppli. Toshiba claimed 16% of HDD units shipping worldwide in the fourth quarter, followed by Hitachi GST with 14% and Samsung with 9%.

"Fiscal 2012 was one of the most challenging and exciting years in our 42-year history," said WD CEO John Coyne. "While responding to two major natural disasters and completing the largest acquisition in the history of the industry, we achieved year-over-year revenue growth of 31% and more than doubled earnings per share.

Coyne said during the fourth quarter, drive demand was in line with the company's forecast as shipments reached 157 million units, bringing total HDD shipments for the year to 599 million units.


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