Welcome to Origin’s weekly update on the on-going hard drive shortage
Thailand’s disastrous floods, the worst in decades have had a major impact on many of world’s leading manufacturers. Hard drive manufacturers in particular have been left very unstable with much of the global production based in some of the worst affected areas. Now, with Thailand’s Monsoon floods receding the recovery work has begun on some of the large industrial areas inhabited by many of the disk storage giants.
On the 17th November Bang Pa-In industrial estate; which is home to Western Digital, completed the draining of 8 million cubic metres of water, which in turn has allowed 50% of the building on the estate to receive power. It is only the second industrial estate to achieve “Dry Status”. Over 2,000 workers from 90 different plants have joined the clean-up operation, but production is still a way off with estimated start date of 11th December 2011.
Seagate recently said that they will not be shipping into any European distributor for the rest of the year, whilst Toshiba are attempting to up production of enterprise drives over the next couple of weeks. Hitachi and Western Digital alike are still without the majority of the production ability.
The impact on the technology world is expected to continue for just over a year, Disk drives are particularly hard hit with Digitimes Research reporting that the flood will create a 12% HDD supply gap in the 4th quarter of 2011 and the gap may increase into 2012. Digitimes estimates the 4Q11 hard disk drive shortage to reach 19 million units.
Some rumours have circulated that the current shortfall of hard drives as well as inflated pricing will have fully recovered by Christmas. Regrettably this is highly unfeasible, and many industry experts agree, the truth of the matter is that this problem will be with us well in to 2012 until the hard drive industry recovers from this natural disaster.
November has seen price hikes on most SAS and SATA drives; which Origin Storage have done their best to absorb, but other technologies such as SCSI have seen massive market price increases. With the problem unlikely to be resolved quickly, major supply shortages and profiteering are likely to be evident in the market through Christmas and into next year.
As always, please feel free to contact us for any further information :-
Andy Cordial – 01256 813988 — Richie Maure 01256 813986