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HP Summit in Boston

By Steven Swift

Exceptionally, this 3-chapters article will be published within a very short period : today, next monday and thursday. Why? Because on next March 24-26 the HP Global Partner Conference will take place. And because, at IDeAS, we prefer to deliver you fresh and up-to-date content. That’s all!

HP put on an impressive show at its Spring Industry Analyst Summit in Boston. The overall impression was that the company has been stabilised, is being reinvigorated with a clear future vision to “be the best partner for the new style of IT

4 key pillars: Cloud; Security; Big Data; Mobility

In her keynote address, CEO Meg Whitman highlighted improving financials, market share gains in key products sectors, re-establishment of trust with key stakeholders, and a consistent strategy built around four key pillars: Cloud; Security; Big Data; Mobility.

Although cost reductions, involving some tough decisions, played a major role in the financial turnaround, Whitman was at pains to emphasise that HP was not returning to a strategy of simply managing short term financial performance.  Although top line revenue was not growing, this was largely due to lack of growth in some of the key markets in which HP operated. Despite this, HP revenues had held up as a result of market share gains in key product sectors, including X86 Servers, Storage, and Printing (both ink and laser-jet). Future growth would be driven by a clear and consistent strategy, supported by renewed investment in key areas of R&D, which was creating a strong pipeline of innovative new products and services. At the same time, there were clear hints that HP would also use its cash pile to target further acquisitions.

Meg Whitman met over 1000 partners and customers during the previous year.

Rebuilding trust with key stakeholders included capturing the hearts and minds of HP people, as well as restoring confidence among channel partners and customers. Key elements behind this were streamlined decision making, strengthening of HP’s ‘demand generation engine, supported by sales training and new online initiatives (both BtoB and BtoC), and the new integrated Partner One Support programme. At a personal level, relationships with key partners and customers were being strengthened by executive sponsorship, and Meg Whitman highlighted that she had personally met over 1000 partners and customers during the previous year.

In response to a question from IDeAs, Whitman said that establishing a clear and consistent culture at HP would be key to avoiding the frequent changes of direction which had contributed to the loss in confidence of recent years. This would need to take account of the many different strands within HP, resulting from the large number of acquisitions, and while it was vital to look forwards, rather than try to return to a previous culture, there could be an emergence of a new and perhaps more multi-layered  “HP Way”.

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This article was written on 20 Mar 2014, and is filled under Event.


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