Jul 10, 2000

THOMSON multimedia and Seagate form new consumer electonics storage systems powerhouse

SCOTTS VALLEY, Calif. - THOMSON multimedia (NYSE:TMS), a world leader in digital consumer electronics (CE) products and Seagate Technology, Inc. (NYSE:SEG), the world's largest consumer electronics storage supplier, today announced an equally owned joint venture to form an independent company, called CacheVision, that is focused on value-added storage-centric systems for home consumer electronics. Leveraging the product development activities of Seagate's Consumer Solutions Group and THOMSON multimedia's digital expertise, CacheVision will begin operation immediately, bringing the new-media technology partners together to develop cost-optimized, time-to-market integrated systems to be incorporated in the consumer electronics products of the world's largest manufacturers.

Based in San Jose, California, CacheVision will soon employ approximately 100 people focused on the design, development, and customization of an array of CE systems, including integrated modules that add function to CE devices, component subsystems for integration into CE devices and potentially complete OEM consumer devices. These systems will bring together technologies-such as disc drives, compression hardware and software, analog to digital conversion, and interface connectivity-to enable CacheVision OEM customers to deliver tested, reliable, optimal consumer solutions to the market much more quickly.

Tomorrow's TV will soon make available for viewing thousands of programs, delivered through hundreds of cable, satellite or terrestrial channels. A key to smart viewing of this huge volume of entertainment content is the use of sophisticated tools, such as navigation systems, electronic program guides, and preference engines, but it also requires local digital storage capacity, based on hard disc drive technology, to help store and browse hours of content. In addition, high-capacity storage devices are even more necessary because of the emergence of the personal TV concept, where embedded software learns individual programming preferences, and automatically manages storage and replay functions. Advanced consumer electronics storage modules may soon be needed in many consumer electronics devices, including TVs, set-top boxes, Personal Video Recorders and DVD players, to address storage needs.

THOMSON multimedia, a major CE manufacturer enjoying relationships with key distributors, a leader in interactive TV services and a leader in the OEM market for displays and components, will support CacheVision with its well-established expertise in manufacturing, product development and technologies for the consumer electronics mass-market-especially in the areas of platforms, user interfaces, digital television, and home networking. THOMSON multimedia will also bring to CacheVision its relations with key OEM customers, its experience supporting leading service providers as well as network operators in the US and Europe, and strategic partners such as Microsoft and DIRECTV.

Seagate is the market leader in disc drives for consumer electronics and for Personal Video Recorders (PVRs). CacheVision will leverage Seagate's activities over the past three years in defining storage architectures and applications for the consumer market, as well as its existing partnerships with key technology developers such as iCompression, Metabyte Networks (together with THOMSON multimedia), EchoStar and Microsoft WebTV. Seagate will also support CacheVision with CE-optimized disc drive technology, and extensive manufacturing and assembling capabilities. Consumer electronics has been a key target for expanding Seagate's core storage business since the company delivered the first CE disc drives to WebTV over three years ago. The creation of CacheVision and the alliance with THOMSON multimedia will further cement Seagate's number one position in this emerging market.

"The creation of CacheVision anticipates a profound change in consumer behavior. Consumers are searching for new features, such as time shifting and services on demand, permitted by the integration of storage capacity in consumer electronics products, leading ultimately to the advent of personal television," declared Thierry Breton, Chairman and CEO of THOMSON multimedia. "We intend to provide answers that consumers expect for information storage capacity in a wide range of products. This new activity should rapidly reach a worldwide leadership position."

"CE devices like PVRs offer a significant opportunity both for the storage industry and the consumer electronics industry," said Seagate CEO Steve Luczo. "CacheVision provides a new and necessary link between previously distinct technologies-the disc drives and components that were formerly limited to roles in computers, and home devices like TVs and cable set-top boxes that bring entertainment to consumers. By enabling CacheVision to bring systems to the CE market more quickly, we're addressing consumers' needs for more storage, while fueling demand for our products."

Richard Johnson, formerly vice president of Seagate Consumer Solutions Group, has been named president and CEO of CacheVision. As Seagate's Consumer Solutions organization becomes part of the new company, Seagate will continue to leverage its Advanced Concepts and Consumer Electronics Labs expertise to provide optimized disc drive technology that CacheVision can utilize in its systems.

"We believe the market leaders in Consumer Electronics will embrace the opportunity to quickly and easily add PVR, caching and other exciting functions to their own new devices today," said Johnson. "In the future, we see continued growth potential. CacheVision is positioned to pursue this future opportunity, developing value added tools to help consumers store, manage, move and retrieve data and A/V content from these devices."

CacheVision will be growing its workforce over the next months, adding the right people to its team-people with cutting-edge, forward-thinking talent in hardware and software engineering, business development, marketing, and other areas. Visit CacheVision on the Internet at http://www.cachevision.com

Seagate Technology, Inc. (NYSE:SEG) is a leading provider of the Internet Infrastructure enabling people to store, access, and manage information. The Company is committed to providing best-in-class products to help people get information when, where and how they want it. Seagate is the world's largest manufacturer of disc drives, magnetic discs and read-write heads, an innovator in tape drives, Storage Area Network (SAN) solutions and a leading developer of Business Intelligence software. Seagate can be found around the globe and at http://www.seagate.com. For automated news, stock and financial information by phone, dial toll-free 877-SEG-NYSE. Outside the U.S. and Canada, dial 760-704-4368.

With sales of 6.7 billion Euros (U.S. $ 6.5 billion) in 1999 and more than 55,000 employees in more than 30 countries, THOMSON multimedia (Paris Sicovam: 18453) (NYSE: TMS), is the world's fourth largest producer of consumer electronics. The Group has four principal activities: Displays and Components, Consumer Products, New Media Services, and Patents and Licensing. THOMSON multimedia engineers, manufactures, and markets display components and consumer products such as televisions, VCRs, audio systems, digital decoders, DVD players and professional video equipment under the popular THOMSON and RCA brand names. For more information: http://www.thomson-multimedia.com

Seagate and Seagate Technology are registered trademarks of Seagate Technology, Inc. CacheVision is a trademark of CacheVision, Inc. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.