Feeds

Hey HP: You may not rate Autonomy, EDS, but buyers do

VCs are circling, true, but so are tech firms - reports

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

Potential buyers are probing Hewlett-Packard over EDS and Autonomy, according to reports.

Bloomberg reports that HP has received an “increase in enquiries” following a recent regulatory filing saying it would dispose of businesses that don’t meet goals.

The Wall St Journal says overtures have come mainly from other US tech companies or their representatives.

According to Reuters, HP regularly gets touched up by bankers, representatives from private equity and technology companies but enquiries have increased since it emerged Dell’s in talks with Silver Lake about a possible $15bn buyout.

HP in its 10-K filing said it was evaluating the potential disposition of assets and businesses that “may no longer help us meet our objectives".

EDS and Autonomy are prime targets for buyers, both being outside HP’s core PC, server and printer business and both coming into the company through departed CEOs, the result of wild strategy swings, and at great cost. EDS was bought for $13.9bn in 2008 by Mark Hurd to turn HP into a services company but four years later HP wrote $8bn off of the deal. Under Hurd's replacement, Leo Apotheker, software was the new future. The firm went on to spend $11.7bn on UK enterprise search specialist Autonomy in 2011 but that deal was also written down - also to the tune of $8bn.

In November, HP accused Autonomy of accounting impropriety and of misrepresenting its value during the purchase, and referred the matter to UK and US regulators. Autonomy’s founder and former CEO Mike Lynch - aka: "the British Bill Gates" - has denied any wrongdoing.

HP is in the midst of a corporate turnaround and restructuring under current chief executive Meg Whitman - who has said that she doesn’t expect it to pay off until 2016.

Announcing the strategy and justifying the long turnaround time, Whitman said: “My belief is that the single biggest challenge facing HP has been changes in CEOs and executive leadership, which has caused multiple inconsistent strategic choices and frankly some significant executional miscues.”

Whitman appeared to be referring to Autonomy, EDS and their CEO sponsors. Autonomy and EDS are prime candidates for sale to either private equity or another tech company - either one within the sector which is looking for expertise or customers or trying to break in.

That said, it’s not like the PC business is a particularly healthy segment for HP to remain in - at least without any major changes. Global sales are falling and during HP’s most recently reported quarter, revenue for the Personal Systems Group (PSG) fell 14 per cent year on year; the unit's business and consumer sales were down 13 per cent and 16 per cent respectively.

On Tuesday, Gartner reported that although HP was seated at the top of the PC heap - it has become a dwindling one. Also, PC-makers' last hope, Microsoft’s Windows 8 operating system, resolutely failed to reignite sales during the fourth quarter covering Christmas, the analyst explained. According to Gartner, Microsoft's brand-new operating system: "Did not have a significant impact on PC shipments in the fourth quarter." ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
BBC: We're going to slip CODING into kids' TV
Pureed-carrot-in-ice cream C++ surprise
6 Obvious Reasons Why Facebook Will Ban This Article (Thank God)
Clampdown on clickbait ... and El Reg is OK with this
Twitter: La la la, we have not heard of any NUDE JLaw, Upton SELFIES
If there are any on our site it is not our fault as we are not a PUBLISHER
Facebook, Google and Instagram 'worse than drugs' says Miley Cyrus
Italian boffins agree with popette's theory that haters are the real wrecking balls
Sit tight, fanbois. Apple's '$400' wearable release slips into early 2015
Sources: time to put in plenty of clock-watching for' iWatch
Facebook to let stalkers unearth buried posts with mobe search
Prepare to HAUNT your pal's back catalogue
Ex-IBM CEO John Akers dies at 79
An era disrupted by the advent of the PC
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Advanced data protection for your virtualized environments
Find a natural fit for optimizing protection for the often resource-constrained data protection process found in virtual environments.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.