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Thursday, August 22, 2013
HP Replaces Enterprise Chief, Q3 Earning Drop

Hewlett-Packard Co shuffled its top ranks on Wednesday, shifting a star executive to a role identifying acquisition targets after a disappointing performance the company's enterprise division.

HP reported a 9 percent decline in Enterprise Group revenue, the company's second-largest division and a sector inb which the company has been competing with IBM and Cisco.

Dave Donatelli was replaced by Bill Veghte at the helm of the Enterprise Group on Wednesday, with CEO Meg Whitman calling the unit's performance "very disappointing."

"What has changed about 2014's outlook is a couple of things - Enterprise Group's performance especially during the quarter," she told analysts on a conference call. "Weak execution has amplified the market challenges we know exist."

"It's unlikely ... that we'll see the growth in 2014 that I had hoped."

Donatelli eas behind some of the company's most significant acquisitions in past years, including of 3Com and 3PAR, which helped catapult HP deeper into the networking and storage markets, respectively.

Whitman said the computing giant was "back in the market" for strategic acquisitions.

In all, the company recorded revenue of $27.2 billion in the fiscal third quarter, down from $29.7 billion a year earlier.

Net income in the quarter came to $1.39 billion, compared with an $8.9 billion loss a year earlier.

Excluding one-time items, the company earned 86 cents a share.

Meg Whitman on Thursday also said in a televised interview on Thursday, that her company was back in the market for acquisitions of up to $1.5 billion,

Whitman ,told business channel CNBC the company could also do deals in the $100 million to $300 million range.

"We have our eye on a number of areas," the executive said in the interview. Whitman did not elaborate on specific targets but explained how the company could use acquisitions.

"Acquisitions will become part of our future, to further some of our strategic initiatives and shore up some of the product holes," she said.

"We don't need a five or six billion dollar acquisition. I think there are acquisitions in the $100 million, $300 million range, maybe some up to 1 to $1.5 billion that we might be interested in."

She also ruled out the idea of breaking up HP or selling assets.

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