updated 11:15 pm EST, Mon November 7, 2011
Nidec restarts hard drive motor production
Japan's Nidec gave some hope to a quicker end to Thai flood-related drive shortages after it stated Monday that it had already resumed making hard drive motors in its factories in Ayutthaya. The company is responsible for making nearly 75 percent of the drive motors in the world and could ease production supplies at companies like Seagate, which are indirectly affected. Production in mainland China and the Philippines was also increasing and could help mitigate other losses, to the point where it was making 100 million motors just in the next quarter.
Digitimes' supplier sources believed it could meaningfully improve drive supplies in the fall. Where the ratio of production had been 62, 23, and 15 percent in favor of Thailand, the Philippines, and China, the new mix dropped Thailand down to 43 percent while the Philippine and China were at respective 36 and 21 percent portions of the production share.
The improved performance won't resolve problems for Western Digital, which has often been considered the worst hit. It operates heavily out of Thailand and could see a severe impact for its fall results.
Drive prices have already been increasing, in some cases doubling, both out of real and anticipated shortages. Only solid-state drives have largely remained unaffected.