Western Digital buys SanDisk for $19 billion

October 22, 2015 // 12:56 p.m.

Tags: #acquisition #china #financial #sandisk #steve-milligan #storage #unisplendour #wd #western-digital

Flash storage giant SanDisk has found a buyer, just one week after rumours broke it was looking to sell up, with Western Digital snapping the company up for $19 billion.

Despite sound financials and a long-running acquisition binge of its own, California-based SanDisk was rumoured to be looking for a buyer last week. Sources suggested there were three names in hat: Western Digital, Micron, and China's Tsinghua Unigroup, which is itself already a stakeholder in Western Digital. One week on, and the rumours have been confirmed - and it's Western Digital that has come out on top.

According to Western Digital's announcement of the acquisition, it's a tiered offer: if the recently-announced investment in Western Digital by China's Unisplendour Corporation closes before the SanDisk deal, the company will pay $85.10 per share in cash and 0.0176 shares of its own common stock for each share of SanDisk's common stock it acquires; if the Unisplendour deal has not closed in time, the offer drops to $67.50 in cash and 0.2387 Western Digital shares per SanDisk share acquired. Either way, the overall value is roughly the same: $19 billion.

'This transformational acquisition aligns with our long-term strategy to be an innovative leader in the storage industry by providing compelling, high-quality products with leading technology,' claimed Steve Milligan, Western Digital's chief executive officer, of the deal. 'The combined company will be ideally positioned to capture the growth opportunities created by the rapidly evolving storage industry. I'm excited to welcome the SanDisk team as we look to create additional value for all of our stakeholders, including our customers, shareholders and employees.'

Western Digital has confirmed that it will continue the ongoing SanDisk-Toshiba joint venture, and that Milligan will act as chief executive officer of the newly combined company.
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