Is a leaderless HP vulnerable to a takeover?

Is a leaderless HP vulnerable to a takeover?

Summary: A leaderless Hewlett-Packard is a vulnerable company. Could Oracle make a bid and become IBM's largest competitor? West coast tech versus East Coast tech...

TOPICS: CXO, Hewlett-Packard

As Hewlett-Packard struggles yet again to find the right leadership, it is vulnerable to a possible acquisition attempt.

With a market capitalization of around $95 billion, HPQ is a large pill to swallow but it is swallowable.

Who could be a potential acquirer?

Oracle [NYSE: ORCL - market cap $116 billion ] would fit the bill nicely. The potential consolidation opportunities with Oracle's Sun acquisition are tremendous. Plus, HP would be able to beef up its services group and its troubled middleware and software businesses.

Oracle would in one fell swoop would become IBM's largest and ablest competitor, able to match Big Blue mano a mano across every one of IBM's business groups. West Coast versus East Coast tech...It's a rare opportunity.

A leaderless HP makes a perfect acquisition target

Yes, IBM would cry "anti-trust" but Oracle knows how to deal with anti-trust lawsuits: it rolled up a huge swath of the enterprise software market -- and now enterprise hardware would make a perfect side dish.

Imagine taking the server appliance concept further: the data center as an appliance. The cloud as an appliance. Just plug it in and all the apps you need are perfectly load balanced and scalable...

Stephen Jannise, ERP market analyst at Software Advice, has put together a poll asking who's next on Oracle's M&A list. He has a pretty good selection of companies but HPQ isn't on it. [Please see: Oracle Mergers & Acquisitions: Who's Next?]

Larry Ellison is a big fan of Mark Hurd, the ousted HP CEO. He could bring him back to help with the HP/Sun/Oracle integration.

Is the deal too bold for Larry Ellison? That's for him to answer.

If it happens it won't be pretty. Tens of thousands of jobs would be lost in Silicon Valley, making an already devastated jobs market worse.

But consolidation is inevitable within maturing industries. Cosnolidation will happen sooner or later. Oracle has an opportunity to make it happen sooner, imho.

Topics: CXO, Hewlett-Packard

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  • RE: Is a leaderless HP vulnerable to a takeover?

    Shawn White on a Snowboard meets Larry Ellison in his MIG... <br><br>Oracle would be an interesting owner. Imagine if they rebranded all of their servers under the SUN name... AMD and Intel based, Windows and Linux-running SUN servers, sitting side by side in datacenters with Sun Solaris boxes. The theoretical Oracle's HP consumer and professional products. Oracle databases backing up networks of HP printers, and Oracle Professional Services the equal to, or bigger than almost everyone else.<br><br>VERY interesting possibility, but a seriously challenging merger to consider... Different corporate personalities... <br><br>Reminds me of AOL and Time Warner for some reason. The thousand reasons why it makes great sense are only outweighed by the million reasons why it doesnt.
    • RE: Is a leaderless HP vulnerable to a takeover?

      @jakerson9@... Your forgetting HP own priority OS . . .
  • Why does HP still exist?

    Their industry-leading iTANIC CPUs powering the best-of-breed UNIX - HP-UX make for a compelling Enterprise hardware purchase. Their top-quality printers have huge margins - as do their PCs and laptops. Lets not forget about their award-winning support teams led by the well-respected EDS. I can see why their market cap is so high! It's so WORTH IT to buy them!

    -- With apologies to Mike Cox
    Roger Ramjet
  • You hit on everything that is wrong with American business logic

    " to match Big Blue mano a mano across every one of IBM?s business groups"

    mano a mano? Seriously? That's exactly the problem. Somewhere along the way American companies forgot all about servicing the customer, and now it truly is about M&A - a battle of wills and egos with so-called investors along for the ride.

    Why try to grow your business one customer at a time when you can take out a paper loan on Wall Street, gobble up a competitor, and still put out the same crap while patting yourself on the back?

    It should be no mystery why the economy truly is a paper tiger.
  • RE: Is a leaderless HP vulnerable to a takeover?

    Mark Hurd's exit is a classic case of Caesar Vs. State - in our times, a showdown between the Individual brand and the Company brand ending quite predictably. The way ahead is to simply strengthen the culture that HP is trying to communicate with this tough decision. This link has an excellent analysis of this situation -
  • The truth about HP, their customer service, and you wonder why Mark Left..

    Dear Mark Hurd, now that you've resigned from HP as CEO, I can't mail this to your office, however, I do want you to know how I and many other customers of HP feel about your customer service, product support, and well.... ... your products. Thank you for giving me the inspiration to finally get my money's worth from your products.. If you'd like to read more feel free to visit
  • don't think so

    IBM, Oracle would face antitrust chalanges and M$ or Apple are too focused on their business.
    Linux Geek
  • Spell Check

  • RE: Is a leaderless HP vulnerable to a takeover?

    I don't think so. HP may have the enterprise chops but their consumer desktop products and consumer support apparatus leave a lot to be desired. Other than laser printers and other enterprise hardware, HP's got nothing worth buying.
    M Wagner
    • RE: Is a leaderless HP vulnerable to a takeover?

      @mwagner@... It might be an opportunity to ditch the consumer business or spin it off. Low margins compared with enterprise.
      • Why not

        @foremski When in IBM-land do as IBM does (i.e. ThinkPad to Lennovo).
        Roger Ramjet
  • YES. From someone with takeover expertise

    cf. "bloody connection to the Congo"