Click pic to visit the HP Computer Museum

What with low-margins and declining sales in the move to mobile devices where Apple is eating everyone’s lunch, there will probably be more of this to come.

Bloomberg reports that multiple sources are indicating that HP will spin off its PC business to focus on enterprise services. As part of that change in focus, it will be acquiring the Cambridge, UK-based data analysis company Autonomy for about $10 billion, a healthy premium over the company’s current market cap.
Although HP’s shift toward a service and consulting focus has been going on for years (we joked that it already looked a bit like IBM West a year ago), the decision to spin off its PC business is a bit of a surprise. After a rocky merger with Compaq, HP had grown to dominate global PC sales, and its purchase of Palm and WebOS had indicated it was at least trying to pursue options that could help keep it relevant as sales of compact touchscreen devices soared.

Nevertheless, the margins of the PC business have remained very narrow, and most of HP’s competition is either suffering or attempting to go upmarket (Dell being the primary example of the latter).

  1. foobar says:

    Sorry about that, this is the right link:

  2. Steve S says:

    I called all of the Best Buys and Walmarts in my area. The HP WebOS Tablet is sold out. Too bad they didn’t start out by pricing them at $99 to begin with. They would have had a hot selling product and loosing money on every unit they sold is nothing new for HP! I have been a loyal HP calculator customer for over 35 years but they sure make a lot of stupid decisions lately. Buying palm for 1.2 billion dollars, developing a Tablet computer and then throwing up their hands and giving up after two months of sales????? What a bunch of effing idiots that are running HP. Bill Hewlett and Dave Packard must be rolling over in their graves.

  3. What? says:

    Carly Fiorina is a douchbagett.

    Everyone who had some insight into the business saw that buying Compaq was a mistake.

    Compaq was a clone maker that had innovative packaging. Its legitimate business (engineering) came from Digital Equipment Corporation. DEC seemed to be very technical, but slightly weak in sales, and was eventually crushed by IBM.

    Compaq wanted to sell crappy (cheap, low margin) PCs, but also grow into a legitimate business computer products company. Putting lipstick on a pig.

    When DEC’s declining business started to sink Compaq, HP, which had a broad product line that included engineering products, consumer products, and business computer products, meger with Compaq.

    From the beginning, this merger seemed like a play by Carly Fiorina to increase her power and personal wealth. Highly unethical if true. Her appearant desire for wealth and power drove her to make business decisions that seemed contrary to stockholders’ interests and customer satisfaction.

    I don’t know if HP would be better of without having taken on sinking Compaq, but their core businesses may have received better attention, and been able to focus on innovation and productivity.

    I am not a fan of PA-RISC, and have believed in the commodity x86 product’s eventual performance supremacy for at least a decade, if not two.

  4. Sarah Menace says:

    Since HP owns both Tandem and Compaq they should merge those two and create a new line. They could call it Condem or Tampaq.

  5. What? says:

    Apotheker seems like a smart businessman who knows nothing about the technical process of creating the products on which he has pinned his shareholders’ company future.

    They are doomed?

  6. John Eissmann says:

    Once upon a tine every product sold by HP had a nearly magical quality, carefully engineered, high quality, unlike anything the competition made. That was when the company was sun by engineers. When the HO board went all politically correct and brought in a woman with no tech background whose only real experience was self promotion and being promoted by latching onto men with admin power, the eventual death of HP was assured. The ngineering talent was gutted and they became commodity producers.
    Most product now made with the HP logo is shoddy junk. I quite buying Hp long ago, no product support, and crummy quality compared to competitors offerings, they had been cashing in on their past reputation.
    HP actually died when they spun off Agilent, where some of the old HO still lives.

  7. Yeah that’s true that H.P are selling their franchises business as H.P is one of the best quality products well they have know selling their business and franchises . Well this is a great information for the people who are looking for developing the franchises business. Thanks for sharing and keep on updating the good work.


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