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Ousting Apotheker may add to disruption at HP, say analysts

Patrick Thibodeau | Sept. 21, 2011
The man Hewlett-Packard hired just one year ago to build its software and cloud computing businesses, as well as take on Apple with a WebOS-powered tablet, may be on the verge of heading out the door.

"When you change a board you'll likely change what it thinks the company should have in a CEO," said Enderle.

Indeed, following the resignation of Apotheker's predecessor CEO Mark Hurd, HP added five new board members in what was then seen as an effort to move past the havoc caused by the ouster of Hurd.

Enderle said the company is also being hurt by leaks of private corporate matters, which could be an indication of internal dissent.

"Companies in HP's space are required to be extremely stable and reliable," said Enderle. "Changing the CEO spot destroys the image that you can trust the direction presented by the company or the promises of its executives."

HP may be better served by providing a better "backstop" to Apotheker and addressing the leak problem.

"Unfortunately the leaks are driving premature decisions and may be taking this choice away from HP's board," he said.

 

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