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Hitachi Global Storage Technologies said Thursday it had achieved an industry milestone, as its Shenzhen-based facility became the first to manufacture and complete a shipment of China-made media for the worldwide hard disk drive market.

Hitachi Ships Chinese Platters

The first shipment, comprised of 65mm media, will be used in 2.5” hard disk drives that go into notebook computers as well as consumer electronic devices. Media is the key component of the hardware upon which electronic data is written in the data recording process.

“Rigorous reliability tests have shown that media made in our Shenzhen facility perform extremely well, with performance and quality matching that of other Hitachi GST media production facilities,” said Mr. Yew-Nam Yong, General Manager, Hitachi Global Storage Technologies (Shenzhen) Co., Ltd.

As production ramps up over a three-year period, additional media form factors will be produced at Hitachi’s Shenzhen facility. The first products will be shipped to Hitachi’s hard disk drive facilities in Thailand.

At full production, the facility will have the ability to produce and ship media to Hitachi assembly facilities in Singapore, China, Thailand and the Philippines for use in every type of hard disk drive produced by Hitachi GST.

Hitachi Invests into China

Hitachi GST announced in August 2003 that it would invest several hundred million dollars to enable its Shenzhen facility to manufacture media.

In parallel with this development, Hitachi broke ground to start construction of a new multi-million dollar disk drive mega-manufacturing center, called Hitachi Global Storage Products (Shenzhen) Co., Ltd., in November 2004. This facility will be used to assemble final hard disk drives and represents an investment up to $500 million when completed.

“This first shipment of media is a critical step in our strategy to cluster in one location our existing Shenzhen-based component manufacturing with our disk drive final assembly facility that is now under construction. Ultimately, having our component manufacturing and final drive assembly facilities in close proximity in Shenzhen will improve our operational efficiency and speed our time to market to serve our China-based and worldwide customers,” added Mr. Yong.

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