Tough economic times or not, Toshiba and Fujitsu are working on a deal to merge their mechanical storage businesses—and they may be getting close to an agreement. According to Reuters, that's the gist of an unsourced report from Japan's Nikkei financial paper.
The deal would see Toshiba purchase Fujitsu's hard drive business, including two manufacturing plants located in Thailand and the Philippines, for the tidy sum of 30-40 billion yen. That's around $338-450 million in greenbacks. Reuters says the acquisition would create "the world's largest maker of small hard drives."
If the two companies reach an agreement, it'll happen at a meeting this week, and the news will go public at the end of this month. On a separate note, Reuters writes that Fujitsu might seek other buyers for the production segment of its Yamagata Fujitsu business unit and a hard-drive parts plan north of Tokyo. Fujitsu is reportedly considering pulling out of the storage business altogether.
Somewhat coincidentally, this news comes exactly one year after we heard that Toshiba, Fujitsu, and Hitachi were considering a joint storage venture. That was only a rumor, but perhaps negotiations did take place and Hitachi eventually pulled out.