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HP adds two more outsiders to board of directors

HP adds two more outsiders to board of directors

HP named two new directors to its board on Friday, including a former chief financial officer of IBM

Hewlett-Packard looked outside the company to name two new executives to its board of directors on Friday, continuing an effort to regain investors' trust after a spying scandal in 2006.

HP named Joel Hyatt, who co-founded the Current Media television studio with former U.S. Vice President Al Gore, and John Joyce, a former chief financial officer of IBM. Joyce is now a managing director at Silver Lake Partners, a private equity investment firm.

Both men will serve terms of less than a year before having to stand for re-election at the company's March 2008 annual shareholders meeting. The company did not have to dismiss any other directors to make room for the new additions, but rather expanded the size of its board from eight to 10 people.

HP hopes the moves will restore trust in its leadership after the forced departure of Chairman Patricia Dunn. She resigned in September when it came to light that the company had hired investigators who used illegal pretexting methods to spy on board members and reporters in an attempt to stem leaks of confidential board information. The scandal also led to legal charges against former HP legal counsel Kevin Hunsaker and three private investigators and data brokers.

Since then, the company has added several new faces to its board from outside companies, including G. Kennedy Thompson, chairman and CEO of the Wachovia bank, and Sari Baldauf, former executive vice president and general manager of Nokia's networks business group.

Despite the turbulence in its boardroom, HP has performed well in the market throughout this period, even passing its rival Dell Inc. in the second half of 2006 to seize the title of world's largest PC vendor. And on Wednesday, HP reported second-quarter double-digit sales growth in PCs and overall revenue, although rising pension costs pulled its profit to a lower gain than last year.


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