Seagate to acquire LaCie

$188 million offer for shares

Leading storage vendor Seagate will acquire competitor LaCie, incorporating its product line-up and executives in a $188 million buy-out.

The Paris-based LaCie is a premium vendor of storage products, from desktop and portable hard drives to NAS devices and enterprise-level storage solutions. Seagate is the world’s leading hard drive manufacturer, with a range of consumer, business and enterprise hard drives. LaCie already uses Seagate drives in its products including the enterprise-grade 12big fibre-channel rackmount storage solution.

Seagate to acquire LaCie

LaCie chairman and CEO Phillipe Spruch and an affiliate hold 64.5 per cent of the stock in LaCie, with remaining stock held by investors on the pan-European Euronext stock exchange. A Seagate media release today said the company had offered Spruch and his associate €4.05 ($5.23) per share in cash, with adjustment according to LaCie’s market value whenever the deal is closed. After that deal, Seagate would move to acquire all remaining shares of LaCie from individual investors.

The Seagate offer values LaCie at €146 million ($188 million), with the €4.05 ($5.23) per share offer to Spruch and affiliate priced at a premium of 29 per cent over LaCie’s average stock price for the last month.

Seagate’s press release says the acquisition would bring together two “highly complementary product and technology portfolios”, and would mean increased growth for Seagate in the consumer storage market, especially in Europe and Japan.

The LaCie purchase would see Seagate acquire LaCie’s engineering and software development arms and, importantly, its relationships with retailers. If the deal is successful LaCie CEO will join Seagate to lead the Cupertino-based company’s consumer storage products organisation, with his new role overseeing Seagate vice president and general retail manager Patrick Connolly and current LaCie deputy general manager Pierre van der Elst.