by Kevin OBrien

OCZ Files For Bankrupcy, Assets to be Acquired by Toshiba

OCZ has filed for bankruptcy announcing that Toshiba plans on acquiring their storage assets within the next 60 days for roughly $35 million. We had an opportunity to speak at length with OCZ on their current and future plans to gain insight on what's to be expected. The prognosis for customers hasn't changed, OCZ has no plans to stop selling consumer or enterprise SSD hardware or software solutions in channel, and most importantly warranty support in this interim period remains the same. 

The acquisition provides Toshiba, "With access to OCZ's controllers, firmware and software, as well as the teams responsible for bringing these solutions to market." Toshiba stands to gain immediate access to new and viable IP that can dramatically improve both their client and enterprise flash offerings. Obviously Toshiba has been supplying OCZ NAND recently, so they're well aware of OCZ's assets and their ability to better leverage them within the Toshiba organization. 

In terms of what consumers and OCZ drive owners want to know however, there are a few significant points to convey:

  • Nothing changes when it comes to warranty support for customers. Regional teams will continue to help with customer service and warranty support. Customers can also get support from the forum team as well. All of the company's tools like the ticketing system are still the right place to go and everything will be honored through OCZ through this interim period. While Toshiba has not made any comment yet on ongoing support, they'll clearly continue to support OCZ warranties and products, as they'll want to ensure a smooth transition and customer loyalty.
  • In terms of product lines yes, all of OCZ's SSD products will continue to be manufactured during this process and the top client lines (Vertex 450 and Vector 150) have already made the transition to Toshiba NAND as noted above. On the enterprise side there is stock on hand to support enterprise customers who have validated the product.
  • The same holds true for software and total solution offerings like ZD-XL. OCZ will continue to offer these solutions and have stock to support customer needs as this solution is just ramping up now. All of the OCZ teams are also intact.

Quite a bit remains outstanding as we wait to hear from Toshiba on how they intend to fold the OCZ brand and products into their current flash offerings. Options range from simply taking the controller and OCZ IP and folding them into the Toshiba brand, or they could simply operate OCZ as a subsidiary, which has been common in other recent storage company acquisitions. The deal is expected to close in as OCZ works through legal proceedings around bankruptcy over the next 60 days. 

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