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Samsung Weighs Buying SanDisk
source: Reuters

First Published: September 5, 2008 -- The Samsung Electronics Company, the memory chip maker, said Friday that it might buy a flash memory maker, SanDisk, in a deal that could reshape a struggling industry.

An acquisition of SanDisk would expand Samsung's market share at a time when prices for flash memory, used in products like digital cameras, cellphones and music players, are falling sharply. The deal would also reduce Samsung's licensing costs.

"We are looking at various opportunities regarding SanDisk, but nothing has been decided yet," a Samsung spokesman, James Chung, said.

In a regulatory filing later, Samsung said one of its options would be an acquisition of SanDisk.

Analysts said an acquisition could shift the balance of power in the flash memory industry away from Toshiba of Japan, which trails Samsung in flash market but plans to nearly double its chip production capacity in partnership with SanDisk.

In a statement, SanDisk said it "periodically has conversations with multiple parties, including Samsung, regarding a variety of potential business opportunities." SanDisk declined to comment further.