HP appoints Meg Whitman chief
HP's board is replacing chief executive Leo Apotheker after less than a year at the helm with immediate effect.
The company has appointed board member Meg Whitman as Apotheker’s replacement, seeking to tap her experience of taking eBay public during her tenure as chief executive of that firm. In addition, Ray Lane moves from non-executive chairman to chairman of the board, and the firm is opening the search for a lead independent director.
“The board believes that the job of the HP CEO now requires additional attributes to successfully execute on the company’s strategy,” Lane says, adding. "We are at a critical moment and we need renewed leadership to successfully implement our strategy and take advantage of the market opportunities ahead.”
Whitman vowed to stand by plans implemented by Apotheker, stating her appointment “does not signal a change in the strategy,” Bloomberg reports. That means the $10.3 billion (€7.6 billion) acquisition of UK software maker Autonomy remains in the cards.
However, the future of HP’s WebOS platform remains unclear, with one staffer telling Forbes the unit doesn't know what Whitman's appointment will mean.
Ovum analysts Jens Butler and John Madden note Whitman brings bags of experience as an enterprise IT customer, but not as the leader of a global IT vendor.