Western Digital® (NYSE: WDC) announced today that it has established a research and development center in Singapore, where the company will leverage the local talent pool and expertise of research organizations, such as Singapore's A*STAR Data Storage Institute (DSI), and universities in the development of advanced hard drive technologies. Located in Singapore Science Park, near WD's newly acquired media manufacturing operation, the Western Digital Singapore HDD R&D Center is now operational. The company also announced that it is entering an agreement with DSI to collaborate on the development of advanced head, media and hard drive system design.
The proliferation of content on personal computers, storage devices and social networks is driving demand for higher capacity hard drives and the advanced science and engineering behind them. WD's focus for the new center is the development of future solutions for hard drive recording heads and media, system design and manufacturing processes. An estimated 65 research engineers will be hired within the next three years.
"Singapore has built a wealth of engineering talent, now available to WD," said Tim Leyden, WD chief operating officer. "This is a product of a supportive government, R&D resources from DSI and universities, and a long history of hard drive industry manufacturing and engineering operations in the country. The resulting environment has produced an advanced technology research and human resource culture that makes Singapore an ideal location for WD investments."
"DSI is very pleased to be collaborating with WD. I believe we will be able to add value to one another, further pushing the limits of drive technology and bringing about new and advanced storage solutions to the industry," said Dr. Pantelis Alexopoulos, executive director of DSI.
WD will have invested S$500 million (approximately $390 million USD) in Singapore over the next five years, including its recent media plant acquisition, capital equipment for capacity expansion and technology enhancements and the HDD R&D Center.
WD, one of the storage industry's pioneers and long-time leaders, provides products and services for people and organizations that collect, manage and use digital information. The company designs and produces reliable, high-performance hard drives and solid state drives that keep users' data accessible and secure from loss. Its advanced technologies are configured into applications for client and enterprise computing, embedded systems and consumer electronics, as well as its own consumer storage and home entertainment products.
WD was founded in 1970. The company's storage products are marketed to leading OEMs, systems manufacturers, selected resellers and retailers under the Western Digital® and WD brand names. Visit the Investor section of the company's website (www.westerndigital.com) to access a variety of financial and investor information.
About Data Storage Institute
The Data Storage Institute (DSI) is a member of the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR). Established in 1992 as the Magnetics Technology Centre (MTC), it was renamed Data Storage Institute in 1996. The research institute's vision is to be a vital node in a global community of knowledge generation and innovation, nurturing research talents and capabilities for world-class R&D in next generation storage technologies. For more information, please visit http://www.dsi.a-star.edu.sg
About the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR)
The Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) is the lead agency for fostering world-class scientific research and talent for a vibrant knowledge-based and innovation-driven Singapore. A*STAR oversees 14 biomedical sciences and physical sciences and engineering research institutes, and nine consortia & centres, located in Biopolis and Fusionopolis as well as their immediate vicinity.
A*STAR supports Singapore's key economic clusters by providing intellectual, human and industrial capital to its partners in industry. It also supports extramural research in the universities, hospitals, research centres, and with other local and international partners.
For more information about A*STAR, please visit www.a-star.edu.sg.
This press release contains forward-looking statements, including statements relating to demand for higher capacity hard drives, number of research engineers WD plans to hire over the next three years in Singapore and WD's plans to invest in Singapore including timing, type and amount of investment. These forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed in the forward-looking statements, including changes in global economic conditions and demand for hard drives, adverse changes to our business and financial condition, and other risks and uncertainties listed in WD's recent SEC filings. WD does not intend, and undertakes no obligation, to publish revised forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances after the date of this release or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events or for any other reason.
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