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The majority of HP (NYSE:HPQ) channel partners contacted by CRN believe that new CEO Meg Whitman is a better choice to run the company than ex-CEO Leo Apotheker. That said, some partners are concerned that Whitman has already pledged her support for some of her predecessor's most unpopular decisions.
Whitman has endorsed HP's $10.3 billion bid to acquire U.K.-based Autonomy, which represents roughly 10 times revenues and 25 times earnings, as well as HP's mulling of a spin-off or sale of its Personal Systems Group. Although Whitman plans to review these initiatives in more depth, she has also made it clear that she agrees with the moves.
"From what I know now, I think the strategy is right and the initiatives we undertook on August 18 are right," Whitman said of the moves in a conference call with Wall Street analysts last week.
Although Whitman said she's committed to PSG and will push for a speedy decision on its future, she also didn't rule out a potential sale of the $42 billion business unit. That's the scenario many HP PSG partners have been dreading since the Aug. 18 announcement.
"History says Meg Whitman is brilliant and has done great things. But I would be much more bullish on her if she didn't just come out and endorse the status quo," one HP partner told CRN on condition that he not be named.
HP appears to be leaning toward spinning off PSG as opposed to selling it, but several partners told CRN they would've felt more confident about the situation if Whitman had taken the PSG sale option off the table.
Todd Swank, vice president of marketing at Burnsville, Minn.-based system builder Nor-Tech, believes that HP retaining PSG would be the best course of action. "Most of us in the channel want to see HP be more competitive with Apple and other device manufacturers that are coming up and taking a lot of our bread and butter business, and HP taking a step in that direction would be a positive," he said.
Meanwhile, HP partners are perplexed by Whitman's endorsement of the Autonomy bid, which has also attracted more than its fair share of criticism from shareholders. At $10.3 billion, HP's Autonomy bid represents nearly one fourth of the Palo Alto, Calif.-based company's $45 billion market capitalization.
"It's mind-boggling and just seems so expensive. It's great technology, but the return on investment pressure is going to be huge," said one HP partner, who asked not to be named.
An HP spokesperson contacted by CRN Monday declined to comment on partners' criticisms of the PSG and Autonomy moves. But in last week's conference call, Ray Lane, executive chairman of the HP board, explained that the Autonomy could help make HP a leader in unstructured information management.
Next: Why HP Partners Oppose The Autonomy Bid
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1 message - Last message on Sep 26, 2011 at 7:13:26 PM by Autonomy4AllSep 26, 2011 7:13 PMRe: HP Partners To Whitman: Please Reconsider PSG, Autonomy Moves
in response to: Fourthrail
If HP do buy Autonomy I'll wager that within a year HP partners will have chunky increased profits, less costs and a rosy future. But only if they are alive and awake in the land of today.
I first spoke with Autonomy in Cambridge in 2000.
I wanted their technology for helping my epileptic fit shattered head with it's muddled and missing memories, my unknown illness and my tattered ability to be part of society.
Autonomy has another side to it's ways of being used.
Mike Lynch is right about the future of HP with added Autonomy.
Take the whole of HPQ's business dealing at the moment - or take Autonomy's 20,000+ global companies.
HP are buying a group of products that have the ability to offer something of major value to each and every member of staff and their families and friends from all of the 20,000+ Autonomy clients, let alone all other individuals planetwide.
Meanings Based Computing for the wo/man in the street. With added understanding,
plus the Venn diagram cross overs of each person and each of the groups they belong to or causes they want to fight.
With an IDOL server and all Softsound's clever listening and understanding at your command all sorts of things become interestingly easy.
Autonomy themselves have said that their kit can do anything www.projectbrainsaver.com www.hightechheadhelper.com and www.tellyourphone.com says can be done. projectbrainsaver is kit that adds understanding to data that helps each individual in the ways that individual needs. A sort of interface between normal life and the strange things society demands off you. Add understanding of data to personal life and a voice interface that easily works. 3 months from now, maybe 4, you could have this... or am I nuts? No. Autonomy was going to build this for me in 2004.
Monday, 26 September 2011
HP Partners To Whitman: Please Reconsider PSG, Autonomy Moves