SanDisk shares jump on reports it’s up for sale

Milpitas-based SanDisk soared on Wednesday over speculation that the maker of flash memory devices was exploring a potential sale amid a consolidation of the tech sector.

Shares of SanDisk jumped 12 percent in mid-session trading.

SanDisk makes flash memory devices, a type of chip that is often used in connection with mobile phones, cameras, and increasingly, in computers and data centers.

With sales of personal computers slumping, along with other challenges, the $300 billion semiconductor industry has been going through a bout of consolidation.

The speculation over the potential sale dramatically increased SanDisk’s market value.

Prior to the reports of a sale, SanDisk had a market cap of about $12.6 billion. But on Wednesday, its market value had jumped to about $14 billion.

Bloomberg News reported that Micron Technology and Western Digital, rivals of SanDisk, were in discussions with SanDisk over a potential transaction.

Micron also makes flash memory devices. Western Digital makes hard disk drives, and might want to add flash-memory chips to diversify its product offerings.

It’s possible that the discussions won’t result in a transaction, sources told Bloomberg News.

Flash memory devices are increasingly popular because they can write and read data more quickly than conventional disk drives, and they also consume less energy in the process. That’s also made them more popular for data centers such as those operated by Mountain View-based Google and Seattle-based Amazon.


Photo: SanDisk headquarters in Milpitas.  (Bay Area News Group)


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