We don’t often participate in the rumormill here as so many don’t seem to pan out, but some rumors do make for more interesting topics of discussion than others, and we recently came across quite an interesting rumor posted over at TweakTown claiming that Toshiba is considering buying OCZ’s consumer SSD division.
For those who follow the SSD industry as closely as we have over the past couple years, you’ll know that OCZ has definitely had a number of ups and downs after they completely dumped their DRAM business in favor of SSDs back in 2011. At the beginning of the SSD boom, OCZ’s SSD business was quite good, but with the ever increasing number of players entering the SSD market, the recent free-falling of SSD prices, the resignation of their CEO, and a business model now solely dependent on being able to secure a cheap, stable supply of NAND flash from NAND flash manufacturers, it’s been more
or less a bumpy ride for the company.
With NAND supply being as scarce as it is these days, OCZ is more than likely looking for a way out, and a Toshiba acquisition does seem like a possible way out for the struggling company. Toshiba, unlike OCZ is one of the few players on the market who actually owns a NAND fab while OCZ, unlike Toshiba, is one of the few players on the market who owns their own NAND controller technology. With a Toshiba buyout of OCZ’s consumer business (along with the Indilinx IP), Toshiba could have access to OCZ’s Indilinx NAND controller technology, gain access to OCZ’s brand recognition in the consumer space, and have plenty of cheap NAND to supply the entire operation. This effectively would be a win-win situation that puts Toshiba in that special little spot in the SSD industry where both NAND and NAND controllers are produced in house by the same company – a spot currently held exclusively by Samsung.
So far, we haven’t heard anything concrete from OCZ or Toshiba so take it with a grain of salt, but we’ll definitely keep our eyes peeled on this one. Could be an exciting merger that would solve all of OCZ’s problems and simultaneously make Toshiba a huge player in the SSD market.