March 8, 2024

Western Digital Announces Update on Company Separation

Western Digital provided an update on its previously announced plan to separate into two independent, publicly traded companies. On track for the second half of calendar year 2024, significant progress towards the completion of the separation is underway with key transactional projects including global legal entity establishment, customer and supplier contract transfers, final stage preparation for government filings, and initial executive leadership appointments for both HDD and Flash companies post-separation.

Announced on October 30, 2023, Western Digital plans to separate its HDD and Flash businesses, creating two independent, public companies with market-specific, strategic focus. The company’s separation will better position each franchise to execute innovative technology and product development, capitalize on unique growth opportunities, extend respective market leadership positions, and operate more efficiently with distinct capital structures.

Implementing a standalone separation strategy is advantageous in creating shareholder value and driving long-term success for its businesses. Over the past several years, the company has laid important groundwork by building market-leading portfolios, enhancing the operational efficiency of each business, including the creation of separate Flash and HDD product business units and separating operational capabilities. Today, each business is solidly positioned to succeed on its own with strong product portfolio, operational and financial leadership in place.

In the current phase of its separation process, the company is making significant progress in a broad scope of projects critical to completing the transaction as scheduled. Currently, Western Digital’s separation teams are establishing legal entities in the 18 countries where operations are located, preparing independent company financial models, finishing final preparations for SEC and IRS filings, conducting a contract assignment process for global customers and suppliers, and designing company-wide organizational structures for both companies.

“Today’s announcement highlights the important steps we’re making towards the completion of an extremely complex transaction that incorporates over a dozen countries and spans data storage technology brands for consumers to professional content creators to the world’s leading device OEMs and the largest cloud providers,” said David Goeckeler, CEO of Western Digital. “I’m pleased with the exceptional work the separation teams have done so far in creating a spin-ready foundation that will ensure a successful transition to independent, market-leading companies for our Flash and HDD businesses.”

Establishing the executive leadership team for the Flash spinoff company also is progressing with Goeckeler today appointed CEO Designate.

“While both Western Digital’s businesses will have the strategic focus and resources to pursue exciting opportunities in their respective markets once the separation is complete, the Flash business offers exciting possibilities with market growth potential and the emerging development of disruptive, new memory technologies. I am definitely looking forward to what’s next for the spinoff team,” added Goeckeler.

Irving Tan, currently Executive Vice President, Global Operations at Western Digital, will step into the CEO role for the remaining standalone HDD company to continue operating as Western Digital.

“Since joining Western Digital two years ago, Irving has made a tremendous impact on the transformation of our global operations organization and plays an integral role in running our HDD business,” said Goeckeler. “He leads with global perspectives, diverse insights and deep industry expertise and I have full confidence in him as Western Digital’s chief executive when the separation is completed.”

The executive appointments announced today are subject to – and will be effective upon – completion of the planned separation following the satisfaction of customary conditions. Additional executive leaders for both companies will be named at a later date as appointments are determined. Western Digital will continue to provide updates throughout the separation process as key projects progress.


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