Samsung said on Friday it had agreed with Hitachi's data storage
business unit to a license deal over hard disk drive (HDD) patents.
Samsung, the world's largest maker of memory chips, said in a filing
with the Korea Exchange that the agreement with Hitachi Global
Storage Technologies Inc covers HDD patents by IBM and Hitachi.
Hitachi acquired IBM's HDD business in January 2003 and then
integrated the business with its own HDD operations to establish
Hitachi Global Storage. The acquisition cost Hitachi $2 billion.
Along with the agreement, Samsung and Hitachi would drop patent
suits they have filed against each other, Samsung said. Hitachi had
sued Samsung in December 2006 and Samsung filed a countersuit in
Hitachi also today denied the reports that the company was in talks
with Sliver Lake Partners to accept investments for its U.S. hard
disk drive unit.
"Hitachi is focusing on improving the performance of the Hard Disk
Drive business, exploring every possibility. However the fact is
that Hitachi has not decided to sell the Hard Disk Drive business,"
Hitachi said in a statement.
According to the recent reports, Silver Lake was considering to snap
up a stake of slightly less than 50 pct in Hitachi Global Storage.
Hitachi's U.S hard disk subsidiary has been bleeding red ink due to
tough competition in the HDD market and falling prices.