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Western Digital reviewing alternatives after Elliott’s push to split

Memory storage devices maker Western Digital Corp said on Tuesday it is reviewing strategic alternatives, including options for splitting off its flash-memory and HDD businesses.

The announcement comes a month after prominent activist investor Elliott Management disclosed a stake of nearly $1 billion in the company and pushed it to separate its flash and hard-drive business. Elliott owns roughly 6 per cent in the California-based company.

New York-based Elliott had also said it offered over $1 billion of incremental equity capital into Western Digital’s Flash business at an enterprise value of $17 billion to $20 billion.

“Through this process, we are actively engaging in a broad range of strategic and financial alternatives that will help further optimize the value of Western Digital, including Elliott’s offer to invest incremental equity capital in our Flash Business,” Western Digital Chief Executive Officer David Goeckeler said in a statement.

Elliott is prepared to provide additional capital to help Western Digital “realize the full value of both of its businesses”, Elliott Managing Partner Jesse Cohn and Senior Portfolio Manager Jason Genrich said. CNA

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