HP’s decision to keep its Personal Systems Group (PSG) business intact is a positive outcome for partners and customers. But partners now want the vendor to prove it's in the PC business for the long haul and backing that decision up with investment in technology, and research and development.
In August, HP CEO at the time, Leo Apotheker, announced intentions to spin off or sell HP’s PSG business, causing a lot of confusion with customers and angst among the partner community on the fate of the business.
Apotheker was then removed by HP’s board in September and Meg Whitman stepped in.
HP rejected Apotheker’s PSG plans.
Whitman said in statement that it objectively evaluated the strategic, financial and operational impact of spinning off PSG, but it was clear keeping PSG within the business was right for customers, partners, shareholders and employees.
“HP is committed to PSG, and together we are stronger,” he said.
Partners agree it is the right move for HP, not only for them, but also for customers.
“Let’s presume that the review they’ve done was exhaustive and the answer they’ve come with up is the right one so they can continue to commit to the sorts of investments they need to make in the technology platforms to make sure that they maintain relevance to customers and remain a player in that space,” Data#3 managing director, John Grant, said. “This is a good outcome for everyone.”
The actions the HP board has undertaken during this process, is also a point of consideration.
“Within a short space of three months, they can allow and approve a board-endorsed strategy to be announced by the CEO, and allow the CEO to change that strategy 360 degrees and endorse that, and they can now endorse that strategy 360 degrees again, what does that really say about the board of directors, it’s a big question mark,” he said.
Corporate Express general manager of IT solutions, Ahmed Latif, said it was a wise move the vendor made.
“They’ve damaged their brand, but sanity prevailed at the end,” Latif said. “We didn’t waver at all from our engagement with HP, but we were concerned and seeing as things have panned out in this way, we’re very happy about it.
“I think they need to do a fair bit of work in assuring the market PSG is a business they’re committed to and it’s a long term approach.”
HP is a significant part of Somerville Group’s business and its director, Craig Somerville, also agreed it was a smart move the vendor made.
“We said to our customers that it would be business as usual and that PSG would continue to be PSG in whatever format, and luckily it will be in the HP format,” Somerville said.
“At the time, I thought they were just testing the water to see how the industry will react.”