Seagate: Ex-employee can’t work for a rival

Hard drive maker Seagate Technology LLC is seeking a court injunction to prevent a former employee, Pete Goglia, from going to work for Western Digital Corp., saying Goglia knows too much about Seagate’s hard-drive reading and writing technology to work for a competitor.

“This particular employee, who has been here for a very long time, has extensive knowledge of proprietary and confidential information,” said Brian Ziel, a Seagate spokesman. “We believe he will inevitably disclose some of that proprietary information that he has gained through working at Seagate.”

Goglia worked at Seagate for 17 years. Most recently he was executive director of its Recording Head Operation. He left the company July 30 and was scheduled to start work at Western Digital on August 9, Ziel said.

Seagate filed an injunction with the Minnesota State Court for Hennepin County, seeking to keep Goglia from working on Western Digital’s read/write technology for two years, Ziel said. “We’re not saying he can’t work there in that division forever,” he said.

In July 2003, Western Digital acquired the assets of storage-head maker Read-Rite Corp. for US$95 million. Seagate is concerned that Western Digital will continue to develop the Read-Rite technology using trade secrets owned by Seagate, Ziel said.

Western Digital declined to comment for this story.

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