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Sun 26 Jun 2005 04:00 AM

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Bazan: HP split won’t affect our operations

HP’s announcement to split its recently-merged PC and printer division groups will not affect the vendor’s Middle East operations, regional executives claimed last week.

HP’s announcement to split its recently-merged PC and printer division groups (see IT Weekly 18-24 June 2005) will not affect the vendor’s Middle East operations, regional executives claimed last week. While HP chief executive Mark Hurd’s decision to break up the personal systems group (PSG) and imaging and printing group (IPG) might have caused speculations as to how it will affect the company’s overall strategy, here in the Middle East, the move was seen as having no impact at all.

“There is no effect as the combined PC and printer group (IPSG) was on a worldwidelevel when it [the split] was announced. Both the business units will continue business as usual,” said Hazem Bazan, general manager, personal systems group and solutions partners organisation, HP Middle East.

According to Bazan, the two divisions will continue focusing on their business objectives and will still work together in joint initiatives. “[The] collaboration [between the two groups] is there and will continue [to be there]. IPG will drive the go-to-market in the consumer space, utilising HP’s strength across all business groups, which includes both IPG and PSG products,” Bazen said.

Meanwhile, Gartner analysts see Hurd’s decision as a positive move as it will allow Hurd to assume more direct control of HP’s various hardware businesses.

“The latest move is a positive step…[Todd] Bradley will report directly to Hurd, bringing HP’s largest single product revenue stream under the direct control of the chief executive officer. The move also brings in an external leader as part of the management team,” Gartner said in a statement.

Gartner believes the company may also disaggregate its services and enterprise hardware business units, creating one more executive to report to Hurd. However, the analyst firm warned of challenges ahead, the biggest of which is boosting the growth and profits for the company’s PCs and other hardware products, which comprise more than two-thirds of HP’s revenue.

“Challenges remain, however, including the need to maintain market share against Dell and its faster-growing, more-profitable hardware business.”

“[We] also believe HP must do more to simplify and focus its marketing, product and channel efforts, and improve its customer relationship management practices,” it said.

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