Jul 03, 2008

£120 Million Investment Will Make Seagate's Derry Plant Global Technology Leader

Seagate Technology (NYSE:STX) has announced a £120 million investment in its Springtown, Londonderry, plant, which will make it the global technology leader in the production of read-write heads for hard disc drives. The investment, which is expected to be completed in 2010, will go into new equipment, research and development, infrastructure and IT systems that will enable the factory to retain its position as the lowest cost and biggest producer of read-write heads in the world.

“This investment will allow our Springtown factory to remain at the forefront of the technology and efficiency battle that is waged in the disc drive industry,” explained John Spangler, vice president at Springtown. “This will allow our Springtown facility to continue supporting Seagate’s market-leading position in the ever-expanding hard disc drive market. Springtown is already one of the leading producers of read-write heads in the world and is the primary supplier of heads for Seagate; this is a position that will be enhanced by this new investment.”

“The success of this factory since it started production in 1994 and the continued success we see for it into the future are evidence of Northern Ireland’s capacity to compete in the global marketplace. Northern Ireland has all of the right ingredients, including a business-friendly environment, a wealth of talent from a well educated, flexible and committed workforce, and an understanding of the importance of the knowledge-based sector for future economic development,” said Mr Spangler. “These are messages I was happy to bring to the US-NI Investment Conference held in Belfast in May.”

Seagate is the world’s largest manufacturer of hard disc drives and recently passed the milestone of being the first company to have shipped one billion disc drives. “It took Seagate 29 years to ship its first billion drives but we expect to ship our second billion within the next five years,” said Mr Spangler. “There is a massive amount of digital content being created in the home, in the office and in many other markets today and most of this content is stored on hard drives. This proliferation of digital content will continue to fuel hard drive demand into the future.”

Last year the hard disc drive industry shipped over 500 million units compared to 1990 when less than 30 million were shipped. Seagate alone shipped just over 175 million drives.

Seagate is the worldwide leader in the design, manufacture and marketing of hard disc drives and storage solutions, providing products for a wide-range of applications, including Enterprise, Desktop, Mobile Computing, and Consumer Solutions. Seagate’s business model leverages technology leadership and world-class manufacturing to deliver industry-leading innovation and quality to its global customers, with the goal of being the time-to-market leader in all markets in which it participates. The company is committed to providing award-winning products, customer support and reliability to meet the world’s growing demand for information storage. Seagate can be found around the globe and at http://www.seagate.com.

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