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Western Digital Investing $51 Million in SSD Company Skyera

By - Source: Western Digital | B 8 comments

Western Digital is betting big on Skyera.

Western Digital has announced plans to invest tens of millions in enterprise solid state storage company Skyera. The investment is part of Skyera's Series B round of funding and Western Digital says Western Digital Capital co-invested in the $51 million round as part of the 'strategic relationship' between the two companies. WD says this relationship will include the joint development of new technology but did not say what this new tech might be.

"One of our primary goals in developing strategic relationships with technology innovators in the broader storage ecosystem is to enable customers to develop highly optimized storage solutions that meet their changing data management needs," said Steve Milligan, president and chief executive officer, Western Digital.

"We see companies like Skyera as offering a dramatic improvement over traditional approaches to emerging storage challenges. We will continue to support innovation by collaborating with customers and partners, and investing in companies who are addressing today’s most exciting storage opportunities."

Western Digital is one of the largest HDD manufacturers in the world but the company no doubt wants to make sure it has a nice solid entry into the SSD market, too. For Skyera, the money mean the company can pour more funding into engineering as well as more mundane but equally necessary parts of the business (like marketing).

"The backing of Western Digital has enabled us to ramp our business across marketing, sales and engineering which has been instrumental in creating the industry’s most innovative solid-state solution," said Radoslav Danilak, chief executive officer of Skyera. "With our skyHawk family of enterprise solid-state storage systems we are witnessing the next era of solid-state storage and I strongly believe that having a close working relationship with Western Digital, the world’s top disk drive vendor, is invaluable as we set out to reshape the storage landscape."

This isn't Western Digital's first investment in Skyera, either. According to WD, it previously funded Skyera as its initial outside investor.

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  • -6 Hide
    ubercake , March 13, 2013 11:35 AM
    It's about frigging time WD gets their tail in gear with SSD tech. How much longer were they willing to wait? They've already lost many customers loyal to the brand by not providing competitive WD alternatives to the SSD out. They released a half-arsed effort line of SSDs that priced themselves out of the ballpark a few years back. Hopefully this means they're really in the game this time. I really hope this partnership works out.
  • 7 Hide
    Branden , March 13, 2013 11:56 AM
    QUOTE: "[WD] wants to make sure it has a nice solid entry into the SSD market"
    umm... WD is already in the SSD market - their current SSD lineup is called silicon drive. (in fact WD SSDs have been around for a while, i bought a 256GB WD silicon edge blue SSD in early 2011)
    their entry into the SSD market already happened, it just went unnoticed.
  • 4 Hide
    azraa , March 13, 2013 12:16 PM
    Well, I cant help but to expect amazing developments coming out of this.
    Every time WD is behind new tech, something amazing happens to the storage industry, just like the the parallel interface was back in the day. I like how this guys take the a similar path to IBM's research branch: all out on new techs.
  • Display all 8 comments.
  • -4 Hide
    madjimms , March 13, 2013 12:19 PM
    For a split second I thought it said "$51 Million in SSD Company Skynet"

    Terminator has ruined me forever. :-(
  • 3 Hide
    greenrider02 , March 13, 2013 1:53 PM
    BrandenQUOTE: "[WD] wants to make sure it has a nice solid entry into the SSD market"umm... WD is already in the SSD market - their current SSD lineup is called silicon drive. (in fact WD SSDs have been around for a while, i bought a 256GB WD silicon edge blue SSD in early 2011)their entry into the SSD market already happened, it just went unnoticed.



    I got that drive too! It was a shellshocker on Newegg for $200 (at the time 256GB drives were $400-$500) and I grabbed a pair before it sold out minutes after it went up.

    It's actually a pretty solid drive. I haven't tested speeds, but I have yet to encounter an issue with either.
  • 0 Hide
    zoemayne , March 13, 2013 3:15 PM
    51 million for something that will be standard in all computers produced (+300 million PCs a year)+ a hot upgrade item is too small of an investment.
  • 2 Hide
    lp231 , March 13, 2013 3:27 PM
    Western Digital already has a range of SSDs, when they bought SiliconSystems back in 2009. This will be their 2nd purchase on a company that also makes SSDs.
  • -2 Hide
    CrArC , March 14, 2013 5:07 AM
    I make $45-97.43 per hour pissing off humanity by spamming my stupid crappy website on Internet forums. ******** http://www.idiot.derp.derp/com **********