U.S. Department of Justice Launches Investigation into Optical Drives Market

U.S. DOJ Subpoenas Sony in Regards of ODD Price-Fixing Probe

by Anton Shilov
10/27/2009 | 03:28 PM

The U.S. Department of Justice has reportedly launched an antitrust investigation into the market of optical disc drive (ODD). The DOJ began the probe investigating price-fixing, big-rigging and allocation of supplies. Sony Corp., LG, Samsung and Toshiba have already confirmed that they had received subpoena from DOJ.

 

“Sony Optiarc America has received a subpoena from the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) Antitrust Division seeking information about its optical disk drive business. Sony understands that the DOJ and agencies outside the United States are investigating competition in optical disk drives.  Sony intends to cooperate fully with the DOJ and other agencies in this inquiry,” an official statement from Sony reads

According to a report from Dow Jones Newswires, criminal antitrust investigation into the market for optical disk drives goes beyond a subpoena disclosed by Sony, according to a source familiar with the investigation. Apparently, the department initiated the probe in recent months, investigating ODD manufacturers for possible price-fixing, bid-rigging and allocation of markets.

In the fiscal year 2008 Sony Optiarc had revenue of $1.52 billion.

Reuters news-agency reports that Hitachi confirmed that its joint venture with LG Electronics, Hitachi-LG Data Storage, had received a Justice Department subpoena, and that the unit was also under investigation by European Union and Singapore regulators. Toshiba said its joint venture with Samsung Electronics, Toshiba Samsung Storage Technology Corp, had also received a subpoena and that it was answering queries from authorities in other regions.