HP to merge printer, PC arms in revamp: sources

Tue Mar 20, 2012 3:23pm EDT
 
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By Poornima Gupta

SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Hewlett Packard Co CEO Meg Whitman plans to combine the computing giant's PC and printing divisions in a major internal overhaul intended to spur combined sales of hardware to customers, two sources familiar with the move told Reuters.

That reorganization, expected to be announced "soon," would see printing division chief Vyomesh Joshi step down and current PC chief Todd Bradley head up the combined unit, the sources said on condition of anonymity, because the information was not yet public.

Chief Executive Officer Whitman is looking to streamline the organization to make it easier for customers to buy the two products together, and to reinvest any savings into research and development, one of the sources said.

HP, the largest U.S. technology company by revenue, is struggling to keep its core personal computing business in the black as mobile devices from tablets to smartphones eat into sales and is trying to reinvent itself as a major enterprise computing provider.

The decades-old corporation, often mentioned in accounts of the founding of Silicon Valley, has been through its share of turmoil in past years.

HP considered for months last year a proposal to sell or spin off its PC arm, known as the personal systems group. That emerged as the company announced it would get out of the business of making tablets with the failure of its TouchPad.

But after Whitman's predecessor and former CEO Leo Apotheker was himself ousted in September for failing to revive a moribund stock, the company abandoned the idea and deemed personal computers core to its overall strategy.

HP's moves evoked a mixed response from analysts. While they felt Whitman was moving at an impressive speed to fix issues at the company and jump-start growth, the advantages of the integration were unclear.   Continued...

 
A HP Invent logo is pictured in front of Hewlett-Packard international offices in Meyrin near Geneva August 4, 2009. REUTERS/Denis Balibouse