Feeds

HP insists Whitman is new broom to clean up execution

Damns Apotheker with faint praise

Top three mobile application threats

With HP’s latest quarterly earnings looking so poor, you’d expect the traditional financial analyst’s call to be dominated by concerns on the minutiae of performance. But every question was on leadership.

HP’s chairman Ray Lane said that the company had been “jolted” by the departure of Mark Hurd, and the board had made the decision to hire Léo Apotheker to develop a new strategic mission for HP. The decision to fire him less than a year later was “absolutely necessary,” he said, while adding that Apotheker had made “important contributions,” to the company.

Lane later said that the board had become concerned over three areas of his performance. The company needs an executive team that works together he said, but “ad-hoc witnessing” showed no evidence of this. The biggest problem, however, was operating execution and understanding the dynamics of business. Apotheker also failed on clear communication of HP's corporate objectives.

Whitman’s main task, he made clear, was to improve the operational performance of HP and develop a strategy to go forward. HP had been starving its research arm for many years and the company had been falling down on operations he said. Whitman promised to be a new broom to the company and reassert it on the global stage.

“HP really matters – it matters to Silicon Valley, California, to the US and, frankly, the entire world,” she said. “HP has disappointed investors in recent quarters and we’re not happy about it. Going forward HP will have no higher priority than to do everything in our power to meet the challenges of today’s macroeconomic environment and, frankly, improve our operational and financial performance.”

Lane also asserted that the new broom effect extended into HP’s board, which has been much criticized for its handling of the company over the last decade. In January he had added five new board members to HP and the company would be taking a long, hard look at itself he promised.

“This is not the board that was around for pretexting, this is not the board that fired Mark Hurd,” he said. “This board did not select Léo. More than half of this board is new after Léo.”

On the proposed spin-off of the personal systems group the board hoped to make up its mind “by the end of the calendar year, if not sooner,” Whitman said. Lane asserted he had pushed for a spun-off PC line with an HP brand but the board had disagreed. That was still his desire he said, but if they could do a better job internally then it would stay part of HP.

Given the exclusive focus of financial analyst’s questions, it’s clear that Wall Street is less than sold on Whitman as the long-term boss at HP. Lane is obviously keen to convince, but Whitman’s future depends on getting the core operations conundrum sorted. ®

3 Big data security analytics techniques

More from The Register

next story
Dropbox defends fantastically badly timed Condoleezza Rice appointment
'Nothing is going to change with Dr. Rice's appointment,' file sharer promises
Audio fans, prepare yourself for the Second Coming ... of Blu-ray
High Fidelity Pure Audio – is this what your ears have been waiting for?
Record labels sue Pandora over vintage song royalties
Companies want payout on recordings made before 1972
MtGox chief Karpelès refuses to come to US for g-men's grilling
Bitcoin baron says he needs another lawyer for FinCEN chat
Number crunching suggests Yahoo! US is worth less than nothing
China and Japan holdings worth more than entire company
Zucker punched: Google gobbles Facebook-wooed Titan Aerospace
Up, up and away in my beautiful balloon flying broadband-bot
Apple DOMINATES the Valley, rakes in more profit than Google, HP, Intel, Cisco COMBINED
Cook & Co. also pay more taxes than those four worthies PLUS eBay and Oracle
prev story

Whitepapers

SANS - Survey on application security programs
In this whitepaper learn about the state of application security programs and practices of 488 surveyed respondents, and discover how mature and effective these programs are.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.