HP tech and strategy chief Robison to retire

The chief strategy and technology officer is leaving after 11 years, and new CEO Meg Whitman won't be hiring a replacement.

Shane Robison, chief strategy and technology officer at Hewlett-Packard, will retire November 1, the company said today--and he won't be replaced.

Robison worked for the Silicon Valley company for 11 years and rose to the level of executive vice president and member of HP's executive council.

"In his role, he was responsible for shaping HP's corporate strategy and technology agenda. He was instrumental in steering the company's multibillion-dollar research and development investment and has led many of the company's largest merger and acquisition activities," HP said in a statement. And according to his biography, "He was one of the principal architects of HP's merger with Compaq Computer and led the acquisitions of Mercury, Opsware, EDS, and 3Com, along with 30 smaller acquisitions since 2005." He joined HP from Compaq.

New Chief Executive Meg Whitman praised is role in research and development and for ensuring "that innovation continues at HP."

The high-level role is being phased out, though. Strategy and R&D decisions will be made "closer to the company's businesses," HP said.

Acquisitions at HP have been tough recently. The company bought Palm Computing for $1.2 billion in 2010 only to kill its products after Leo Apotheker took over as CEO. HP's decision to acquire software company Autonomy for about $10 billion in cash didn't sit well with some investors, either. Whitman now is revisiting its earlier strategic decision to potentially spin off HP's PC division.

Stephen Shankland writes about a wide range of technology and products, but has a particular focus on browsers and digital photography. He joined CNET News in 1998 and since then also has covered Google, Yahoo, servers, supercomputing, Linux and open-source software and science.