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March 1, 1987


By CBR Staff Writer

Storage Technology Corp president Steve Jerritts has been showing the flag in Europe, and amid some decidedly bullish talk about the company’s prospects, is talking of a string of new products due out any month now. Most importantly, he says that StorageTek is ready to respond to IBM’s upcoming announcement on 3380s – the betting is a drive that stores 10Gb – any time IBM cares to introduce the product. Also in the works are an entry level printer in the racey Documation Series 5000 line of very fast impact printers, and a smaller laser printer using the Siemens engine to come in below the 100 page-per-minute Siemens-based machine it now offers. Breaking down the company’s 1986 sales of $830m, Jerritts says that 50% was accounted for by disk drives, controllers and semiconductor secondary storage, 35% by tape drives, 15% by printers. The printer proportion is expected to stay constant at 15%, but StorageTek looks for disk and tape drives to split about evenly by 1990 – not least as a result of the new 3480-type transport and the unique Nearline 4400 automatic tape cartridge library system. The company’s current installed base, on Jerritts’ figures, looks a lot more healthy than might have been imagined given the company’s bankruptcy proceedings. He says that there are 30,000 spindles of disk storage installed – and that 80% are the new 8380 3380-compatible drives. It has 40,000 tape drives installed, and 60 of the Siemens-powered laser printers. On the Nearline library system, Jerritts reckons that it will be suitable for 60% of the applications that would otherwise have used the failed optical disk.

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