The European Commission has finished its deliberation on the proposed acquisition by Seagate Technology of Samsung's hard disk drive business, and has no objections.
The $1.4bn (£890m) purchase was announced in April 2011, and saw Seagate commit to supply drives for Samsung's products while Samsung would supply flash memory to Seagate.
The EC decided that because the acquisition would mostly affect the market for 3.5" desktop and 2.5" mobile hard disks, where Samsung "is not a particularly strong competitor", there was little risk of disruption. With three strong suppliers for 3.5" drives, Seagate/Samsung, Western Digital and Hitachi, and four for 2.5" drives — those three plus Toshiba — the Commission thought that customers could switch suppliers easily and there would be little risk of the hard disk companies colluding on price.
However, the Commission noted, this decision is independent of Western Digital's $4.3bn proposed buy-out of Hitachi's hard- and solid-state disk drive businesses, announced in March 2011, which "was notified one day later and is still pending".