OCZ has seen quite a bit of action inside of its walls this past year, and clearly, not all of it has been ideal. In fact, it wouldn't be a stretch to equate the goings-on inside the company to like being on a roller-coaster - the company has definitely had its share of ups and downs. In September, problems within the company began to become obvious to the regular watcher as Ryan Peterson, someone who had been with the company since its inception, stepped down. A month later, Board Member Ralph Schmitt stepped in.
At the time of Ryan's departure, OCZ's legal hassles began to mount, and when taking a look at any stock news feed, the reality is - OCZ has a battle ahead of it. In every case, shareholders are accusing the company of being misled with regards to the company's "customer incentives", which led to the delay of its 2Q financial reports. In a new interview, Schmitt has said that the issue is being investigated by the Securities and Exchange Commission, and that its process is what's holding up the release of OCZ's 2Q reports.
These issues contrast with the rumors around why Ryan stepped-down (or rather, was given the boot) - that he failed to get the company acquired. There were heavy rumors for months that Seagate was pursuing the company, though OCZ had never confirmed that at any point in time.
All of this is the lowest point of the roller-coaster, but there are thankfully a couple of highs. In the same interview, the company admitted that it had relied too much on a single NAND vendor, which led to shortages which in turn led to a stock price plummet. Schmitt is proud to say that the problem has now been remedied, and as of Thursday, OCZ's share price rose as much as 30%.
From an enthusiast standpoint, the most exciting thing to happen with the company is with the launch of Vector, an SSD the company can brag about in many ways others can't - the controller, firmware and SSD itself were all built in-house. As Marco discovered just the other day, OCZ really does have a winner up its sleeves, as it offers "one of the fastest, most consistent performing solid state drives" HotHardware has ever tested. Now, if we can only get the price to go down just a wee bit.
So, what's next for the company? It plans to "Crank up the speed", of course. Without question, we'll definitely be seeing follow-up SSDs using OCZ's brand-new Barefoot 3 controller, and few companies will ever brush the opportunity of an acquisition off the table. When further questioned about that, Schmitt claimed that the company is never opposed to the idea, but that it'd rather hold off because "we believe the valuation of the company today should be higher even if based on the pure assets of the company". Fair enough.
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