Seagate's Watkins Sounds Off

The hard-drive company's CEO puts acquisition rumors to rest and opines on the state of the data storage industry in the U.S.

Bill Watkins, the chief executive of hard-drive maker Seagate Technology (STX) loves to talk. When he does, it sometimes makes headlines in ways he didn't intend. Last month, when he gave an interview to The New York Times, it resulted in a front page story about a Chinese-controlled hard-drive company that would give Chinese spies a better opportunity to spy on American companies and government agencies who buy computers built with those drives. The story left the impression that Chinese companies were actively seeking to acquire either Seagate or its rival Western Digital (WDC), and forced Watkins to clarify what he meant days later.

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