H-P Looks at Getting Out of PC Business

Aug 18, 2011  •  Post A Comment

Hewlett-Packard is reviewing its personal computer business and may spin off the division, The Wall Street Journal reports.

According to the story: “In a release Thursday afternoon, H-P said its board has authorized it to explore strategic alternatives for its personal systems group. H-P said it would ‘consider a broad range of options that may include, among others, a full or partial separation’ through a spinoff or other transaction.”

The company also confirmed it’s in negotiations for the possible acquisition of U.K. data-analytics company Autonomy Corp. The takeover would be valued at almost $10 billion.

The news came as H-P reported results for the third quarter, including a preliminary per-share increase in profit.

“Shares were down 7.3% at $29.09 in recent trading, as H-P again cut its full-year guidance and projected fiscal fourth-quarter results below analysts’ expectations, based on a Thomson Reuters survey,” the story reports.

The company announced plans to discontinue operations for webOS devices, including the TouchPad and webOS telephones.

“In the latest quarter ended July 31, profit rose to 93 cents a share from 75 cents a share a year earlier,” the story reports. “Excluding restructuring charges and other items, earnings rose to $1.10 a share from $1.08. Revenue increased 1.6% to $31.2 billion.”

H-P’s sales of PCs to consumers have been weak in recent quarters. “The consumer PC weakness was part of the reason the company reined in its full-year outlook in May, in addition to pressure from March’s destructive earthquake and tsunami in Japan and lower operating profit in the services unit,” the story reports.

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