Feeds

Apotheker: HP board was just as culpable for Autonomy buy

I didn't get chance to 'implement strategy in its totality'

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

Leo Apotheker reckons he shouldn't be forced to single-handedly carry the can for HP's calamitous acquisition of Autonomy when there are a bunch of board members that were equally at fault.

The man spent 11 short months at the Silicon Valley giant, but this was more than enough to make an indelible mark - his tenure included the seemingly snap decisions to eject slabs and smartphones as well as to pay $10.24bn for Autonomy.

But in a note to Bloomberg, Apotheker seemed to point the finger at other senior figures as being just as culpable for the deal.

"No single CEO is ever able to make decision on a major acquisition in isolation, particularly at a company as large as HP - and certainly not without the full support of the chairman of the board," he wrote.

Not only did HP dig very deep for the Brit software maker, but as world + dog now knows it was forced to write down the value of the business by $5bn after claiming it uncovered some irregularities in Autonomy's books.

A public spat ensued between HP and Autonomy former honcho Mike Lynch over those claims - yet no lawsuit has been filed by either party.

Subsequently however legal action was taken by an investor against a bunch of HPers over the handling of the Autonomy buy, and named as a defendant among others was hapless Apotheker, who until now maintained a silent vigil.

"The HP board, led by its chairman, met many times to review the acquisition and unanimously support the deal, as well as the underlying strategic objective to bolster HP's market presence in enterprise data," Apotheker added in the note.

Despite sending its share price spiralling downwards by billions, from $77bn when he started to $45bn on his exit, Apotheker defended his time at the top.

"I still believe the strategic vision that we tried to implement was sound … HP was and still is in need of a transformational strategy," he said.

"Unfortunately, I was never given the opportunity to implement the strategy in its totality," he added, "the new leadership has now been in place longer than my 11-month tenure. But it's clear that HP still is in search of the right path".

Since leaving HP Apotheker has not been offered another seat on the CEO-merry-go-round and his role in tech remains limited to a supervisory role at French IT firm Steria. ®

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

More from The Register

next story
NSA mass spying reform KILLED by US Senators
Democrats needed just TWO more votes to keep alive bill reining in some surveillance
Bada-Bing! Mozilla flips Firefox to YAHOO! for search
Microsoft system will be the default for browser in US until 2020
Google bags OBSCENELY LARGE Times Square ad space for New Year's
Choc Factory pays millions for whacking new digital screen
'Cleantech' a dirty word for VCs? RUBBISH!
They just think the current schemes are terrible
prev story

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
Getting started with customer-focused identity management
Learn why identity is a fundamental requirement to digital growth, and how without it there is no way to identify and engage customers in a meaningful way.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.