HP considering sale of underperforming units
As with any struggling company, HP's looking at ways to streamline their business and raise some cash in the process. Late last month HP send a 10-K filing to the US Securities and Exchange Commission that the company will "continue to evaluate the potential disposition of assets and businesses that may no longer help us meet our objectives."
In plain talk: if you're a part of HP but aren't helping out the bottom line as much as HP would like, you might not be part of HP for much longer. Of course, the ideal method for getting rid of those not-helping-HP units is for HP to sell them. You know, stop losing money by making money.
This isn't the first time HP's looked at selling parts of the company. In fact, a lot of HP's problems over the past year can be traced back to efforts to dispense with large parts of the company. It was the plan of then CEO Leo Apotheker and still-Chairman Ray Lane to split HP into two distinctly separate companies, with one focusing on enterprise software and the other built around the declining PC business. That plan kicked off a firestorm in Palo Alto and Wall Street, ending with the ouster of Apotheker. HP also tried and failed to find a buyer for webOS and/or the webOS Global Business Unit at a favorable price, eventually opting instead to commit webOS to open source and spin off the GBU as a standalone company.
Or at least, that was the plan months ago. Gram, that standalone company, has yet to launch, and since HP's decision to open source webOS a year ago the mobile landscape has dramatically changed. Could HP be weighing giving a sale of webOS and it's GBU another go? Not likely, considering how much they've invested in spinning off Gram so far, but… crazier things have happened.