HP names Léo Apotheker new CEO and President | webOS Nation

HP names Léo Apotheker new CEO and President 56

by Dieter Bohn Thu, 30 Sep 2010 4:46 pm EDT

HP has announced their new president and CEO: Léo Apotheker. Apotheker comes to HP after serving as the CEO for SAP, the German company that specializes in enterprise-class applications and software.

Apotheker takes over on November 1st. He's a surprise pick to us - we guess we'll see if this man with 20 years of enterprise-class experience can continue HP's success in the consumer space. If nothing else, this bring the Mark Hurd saga to a close.

Full press release after the break.

Source: Business Wire

PALO ALTO, Calif.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The Board of Directors of HP (NYSE: HPQ) today announced the election of Léo Apotheker as Chief Executive Officer and President. Apotheker, who previously served as CEO of SAP, will also join HP’s Board of Directors. The Board also elected Ray Lane, Managing Partner at Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, as a new member of the Board and designated him as non-executive Chairman. Both elections are effective November 1.

During Apotheker’s more than 20 years at SAP, he was a driving force in making it the largest business software applications company in the world. Apotheker helped develop and implement the most significant changes in SAP history. During his tenure, he transformed R&D and technology platforms and expanded business models and customer segments. Apotheker also helped lead SAP to 18 consecutive quarters of double-digit software revenue growth between 2004 and 2009.

Lane has served on the Board of Directors of more than 20 public and private companies and joined Kleiner Perkins in 2000. Previously, he served as President and Chief Operating Officer at Oracle Corporation. Earlier in his career, Lane also worked at Booz Allen Hamilton, EDS and IBM.

“Léo is a strategic thinker with a passion for technology, wide-reaching global experience and proven operational discipline – exactly what we were looking for in a CEO,” said Robert Ryan, lead independent director of the Board. “After more than two decades in the industry, he has a strong track record of driving technological innovation, building customer relationships and developing world-class teams.”

Ryan continued, “Léo has been a leader in anticipating the transformation taking place in our industry, and we believe he is uniquely positioned to help accelerate HP’s strategy. He has demonstrated success in the U.S. market and also has vast international experience – which will be a major asset as HP continues to expand globally, particularly in high-growth emerging markets. HP has the right assets and market positions, and now we have the best team to realize the company’s enormous potential.”

“HP has a powerful mix of businesses, products and services, one of the most innovative cultures in the industry, and an accomplished management team who have played a critical role in its success,” said Apotheker. “I am deeply honored to be joining the more than 300,000 dedicated HP employees.”

Apotheker continued, “Given HP’s diversified products and services, its financial strength, and its leadership position across markets, no other company is as well positioned to drive – and profit from – the revolutionary changes under way in the marketplace. As we move forward, HP will continue to be a valued partner with our customers as well as a fierce competitor. I look forward to working with the outstanding people at HP to write the next chapter in the company’s long and proud history.”

“I am excited to join the Board of this pioneering company, and look forward to working closely with Léo – and the rest of the Board and senior management team – as they capitalize on the changes taking place across the industry,” Lane said. “I have known and admired Léo for almost 20 years. He is ideally suited to build on HP’s strong foundation, leverage its many assets and keep the company at the forefront of innovation.”

Apotheker will succeed Cathie Lesjak, who was named interim CEO in August 2010. Lesjak, who has served as HP’s Chief Financial Officer since January 2007, remains CFO and continues to serve as a member of the Executive Council. Ryan said, “Cathie is and will continue to be an important part of HP. We are extremely fortunate to have one of the deepest, most talented senior management teams in the industry and to have someone of Cathie’s caliber lead HP during this interim period. On behalf of the entire Board, I would like to thank Cathie and our senior management team for maintaining HP’s focus on serving customers and continuing to execute our strategy.”

Financial analyst conference call details

On Friday, HP will host an audio webcast for financial analysts and stockholders to discuss the elections. Details are below:

When: Friday, October 1, 9 a.m. ET/6 a.m. PT

URL: www.hp.com/investor/home

It is recommended that attendees dial in 15 minutes early to avoid registration delays.

About Léo Apotheker

Apotheker worked at SAP for more than 20 years in a variety of positions, most recently as Chief Executive Officer. As a member of SAP’s Executive Board from 2002 until 2010, Apotheker oversaw the full sweep of the company’s operations. He led worldwide sales, service, and field operations for five years and more than doubled the number of customers; successfully turned around SAP’s North American operations; and led more than a dozen acquisitions, including the approximately $7 billion takeover of Business Objects, the first major acquisition in SAP’s history.

In addition to serving as co-CEO and CEO, Apotheker also previously served as deputy CEO, and, for five years, as President of Global Customer Solutions and Operations. For a period, he also had responsibility for SAP’s North American operations. From 1999 to 2002, he was President of SAP EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa); before that, served as CEO of South-West Europe Region; and was CEO and founder of SAP France and SAP Belgium. He started his career at SAP in 1988.

Apotheker was the founding president and chief operating officer of ECsoft BV, one of the largest European venture capital start-ups, from 1992 to 1994. He also has held leadership and management positions at ABP Partners, McCormack & Dodge Europe, S.W.I.F.T. and Altex GmbH.

Apotheker was born in Aachen, Germany on September 18, 1953, and graduated with a BA in Economics and International Relations from Hebrew University, Jerusalem. He is fluent in five languages (English, Dutch, French, German and Hebrew) and was awarded the French Légion d’honneur in 2007 in recognition of his business leadership and contribution to the French economy.

Apotheker currently serves as Vice Chairman of the Supervisory Board of Schneider Electric SA, and is a member of the Board of Directors of GT Nexus and the Board of PlaNet Finance, a not-for-profit organization.

About Ray Lane

Lane is a Managing Partner at Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers. He sits on the boards of Fisker Automotive, GreatPoint Energy, Luca Technologies, Xsigo, Elance and Quest Software. Prior to KPCB, he was President and Chief Operating Officer of Oracle. Before joining Oracle, Lane was a Senior Partner with Booz Allen Hamilton and led that firm’s Information Technology practice worldwide. Prior to Booz Allen Hamilton, he served as Division Vice President with EDS. In addition, he spent ten years with IBM in various product management, sales, and marketing positions. Lane received a bachelor’s degree in mathematics and an honorary PhD in science from West Virginia University. He serves as Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Carnegie Mellon University, is on the Board of Governors of WVU, and serves as Vice Chairman of Special Olympics International.

About HP

HP creates new possibilities for technology to have a meaningful impact on people, businesses, governments and society. The world’s largest technology company, HP brings together a portfolio that spans printing, personal computing, software, services and IT infrastructure to solve customer problems. More information about HP is available at http://www.hp.com.

This news release contains forward-looking statements that involve risks, uncertainties and assumptions. If such risks or uncertainties materialize or such assumptions prove incorrect, the results of HP and its consolidated subsidiaries could differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements and assumptions. All statements other than statements of historical fact are statements that could be deemed forward-looking statements, including but not limited to statements of the plans, strategies and objectives of management for future operations; any statements concerning expected development, performance or market share relating to products and services; any statements regarding anticipated operational and financial results; any statements of expectation or belief; and any statements of assumptions underlying any of the foregoing. Risks, uncertainties and assumptions include macroeconomic and geopolitical trends and events; the execution and performance of contracts by HP and its customers, suppliers and partners; the achievement of expected operational and financial results; and other risks that are described in HP’s Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the fiscal quarter ended July 31, 2010 and HP’s other filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including but not limited to HP’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended October 31, 2009. HP assumes no obligation and does not intend to update these forward-looking statements.



never good when I see a typo in a press release written by an MBA at a multi-billion dollar company...

This is what NYtimes says about him:
Mr. Apotheker moved through the ranks of SAP, including stints as the head of sales, co-chief executive and chief executive. He resigned as chief executive in February, just seven months after earning the job outright.

During his tenure as chief, SAP suffered through a large round of layoffs, major product delays and a customer revolt against the company

I just sent in this tip as the article was being posted. Interesting news.

Terrible decision for CEO!!!! He resigned from SAP after only 7 months as CEO. Say bye to Todd Bradley...no reason for him to stick around. HPQ really blew this one.

Just wait. If he accidentally says the word "web" in the same sentence as "operating system" he'll become the sheep's new lord and savior.

Wikipedia says he was CEO of SAP for nearly 2 years.

Clarification...SOLE CEO for 7 months. Quote below from Business Insider.

"Apotheker was CEO of SAP until February when he resigned after SAP decided not to renew his contract.

Apotheker was only solely in charge of SAP for 7 months. (He was co-CEO for a year prior.) He was with SAP for 20 years."

Disagree completely. He was Deputy CEO, Co-CEO before he was CEO. He was COO at Oracle, etc., etc. he was on the Executive Board for about 9 years. This guy has tons of leadership in the technical field. What I find interesting is that SAP's #1 competitor is Oracle.

If you can dodge a wrench you can dodge a ball, or be HP's CEO.

BAD decision...I have never ever daid this or even thought it til now....time to move to Android!

We use the SAP system here at work, and I can tell you it is a hassle. They totally screwed over Todd Bradley, so he will most likely leave, thus no backing for Palm. THUS palm name is gone, theyll eat the patent and all is doomed for a smartphone.

FIGURES! This was the best choice they had for a CEO?!? are you serious?!?

"time to move to Android" because you don't like the pick for CEO of HP? Really?! How about picking a mobile product because it gets the job done in a way that works best for you?

And Leo designed the SAP system, right? So of course it totally is his fault and he sucks...

He was with SAP for 20 years.

Are you for real? I hope you are just kidding. What is wrong with this community? People want to switch to another platform because HP did not hire their preferred candidate for a CEO position?

Oh boy! How old are you kid?

KID?!? Damn...I got two of my own.

BUT...serious or not, I was just thinking that this was probably not the best move for us webos community people. I don't expect to jump anywhere...I love WebOS...I can't stand Android, but if it comes down to it, I guess I will have to live with it.

I sure hope all goes well, was just really pitching for a better CEO option.

My previous post was to be taken somewhat lightly...I work in a IT type position with Oracle and SAP on a daily basis so, I know what they can and can't do...and I have people coming to me constantly with those "The Sky is Falling" problems...so that is how I posted my reply...now you get it right?

Actually, when you explain it that way, I can understand your knee-jerk response. I too work daily with "enterprise" systems and have often had to forge a path through some real IT badlands. HP is not the exception on that list either, but I don't hold it against Palm.

HP is definitely not the exception. Two words "Quality Center!"

Oh, please...you are going to switch phones due to the selection of the new CEO at the largest tech firm in the world. You bad mouth SAP. If they are so bad, why did their revenues go up 16% last qtr & profits go up 15% to $2.9B & $638M respectively? That just seems like HORRIBLE leadership to me.

Wow, I can't believe anybody who ever cared about the "Palm name" would have much love for Todd Bradley. It was under his watch, after all, that Palm fans suffered through the "PalmOne/PalmSource" branding debacle for a couple years - until a few months after his resignation, when PalmOne came to its senses and bought back the sole rights to the Palm name.

ughhh.... Idk anything about this dude so imma be the one that still has hope that all will be fine....

Not what I expected, but I have an open mind. Alright Leo, impress me.

Now we can concentrate working on webOS and the next gen Pre!

Take care,


Ok Leo, welcome, no show us what you can do to advance webOS mobile handsets and "connected devices"

I heard that he has a thing for printers...

... and down drops hpq

Don't think Leo will be meddling in Palm's activities or HP's roadmap immediately. I'm sure he's being brought on board to 'execute' and adjust accordingly. Heck, maybe some shifting.. Sood in Product design!!

Ok Leo, welcome, no show us what you can do to advance webOS mobile handsets and "connected devices"

All of us seem to forget that our beloved WEBOS and HP's mobile division is a VERY LITTLE UNIT within a DIVISION of HP.....
I know we would like to think Webos is the center of HP, but the reality is that even if Ruby's division manages to sell 10 Million phones next yr it still would not be one of the top 15 divisions of HP....Time to face the facts here that PALM is a little fish in a HUGE POND......

I don't know this dude @all. And maybe I'm being biased because I'm 30 and I've seen how old people have run this country (the U.S.) into shit. But I think HP could have used some younger blood. But...maybe I'm wrong and this dude is totally in tune. I actually hope I'm wrong.

ok, just went to my desktop and read the press release and took a better look at the man. He doesn't look that old. That deceitful 3.1" screen on the Pre. Boy I'll tell. New hardware needed, Sir!

Well, this "dude" is not from the U.S. so maybe if you give him a chance, he will surprise you. I doubt he will change the phone software of form factor of a phone that is due out in a few months. CEOs at this level don't usually deal w/those kind of details.

Whoa. At the press conference he just said that he didn't take the CEO job to get into the smartphone business. However, there's a clarification coming tomorrow.

How do any of you know anything about this guy, besides what little information we were given? You are making lame assumptions. Whiners.

calm down man, it's called initiation! HP, Hurd, McKinney, and even Sood had to get jumped before they could become members of the infamous Palm gang!

Hahaha. Initiation, well if you put it that way.


good time to join the facebook group telling Palm to hire Jason...

and we should all chip in to help fund a contractor for the new CEO to take to dinner and harass...

Ppl who never been anything close to a CEO criticizing on HP's move.. You gotta love the internet..

Quote: "I don't know this dude @all. And maybe I'm being biased because I'm 30 and I've seen how old people have run this country (the U.S.) into shit. But I think HP could have used some younger blood. But...maybe I'm wrong and this dude is totally in tune. I actually hope I'm wrong."

Given that it's likely young people who have made "Angry Birds" the front runner in the app contest, if this new CEO gives us more insipid, mindless time wasters, then, yah, he's in tune and, yup, you're wrong.

(Maybe y'all could stop an illegal, immoral war or two in your spare time--a sort of "Flippin' the Angry Bird" movement against Bush/Obama et al....Hmmm?!)

Angry Birds is wickedly addictive puzzle game that appeals to people of all ages. Enough so that it could be used a tool for world peace as it captivates the masses... ;)

Thanks for the quote! Its always nice to meet a fan. Also, most people in the U.S. would agree with your stance on the war. Trust me, if we could stop them in our spare time, we would.

The analyst on Nightly Business Report said that HP is expremely strong in hardware & enterprise services. The appointment of 2 very strong software people (Leo & Lane) means that HP is determined to improve in the area where it is weakest: software. I doubt Leo will abandon HP's direction toward using WebOS. Instead, we'll see WebOS deployed on all kinds of hardware & used as the main front end of an enormous cloud infrastructure. Leo & Lane sound like good news to me.

300,000 employees! I hope all of them have WebOS phones....

The HPQ stock dropped 3% since they hired him.

I guess it isn't a good news.

Awesome that HP hired the guy that invented both the drug store AND that Spanish button on our TV remotes!

Two former Oracle guys? Hmmm. I don't see hiring, I see a vendetta.

Leo was kicked out of SAP because he had a very bad management style and he was in the process of ruining SAP (not only in Germany/Walldorf but worldwide). He is arrogant and shows a lack of respect for his employees. Perhaps he is valuable as a board member because all this guy cares are pure numbers but he is in my opinion definitely the wrong guy as CEO. When he keeps his course he will seriously damage HP.

Oh Boy! Pre's here. Pre's for sale. Buy them while they're hot.

If nothing else, this bring the Mark Hurd saga to a close.

I disagree. Oracle is SAPs biggest competitor. There have been many conflicts in the past. This CEO might even be a provocation to Oracle.

whos interested i just want what is promised to me ....FLASH

Waaah, I don't want to hear anymore about CEOs, about who has left and how has come. I want my new superdevice and webOS 2.0 (and flash)!
CMOOOOON Paln (Hp)!!!

I'm not trying to get into anything here and in fact I'm not even one of them, but a lot of people bought there Palm Pre's simply because it was going to be the first smart phone with flash. I can see people still wanting it even though it's probably not going to happen, because a lot of these people are stuck with a 2 year contract and are not the primary (like me, wife gets a bigger discount through her company so I can only upgrade every other year). I'm very pleased with my Pre. On a day to day basis my Pre serves all my smart phone needs very nicely, but I'd be pretty pissed right now if I bought the phone simply because I "knew" that I'd be getting flash soon, so I could surf the "whole" internet and then the company yanked the rug out from under my feet on that promise.

Maybe the next device will be called the "L

this is great, I can see webOS becoming the best mobile enterprise solution under this guy. Throw in some HP expertise in enterprise quality hardware and we have a winner.

I worked for SAP during the entirety of his tenure as co-CEO and then sole CEO. It was a tough time for the company because all of their customers were going through the financial crisis and cut spending. He did well to get them through that tough time, and departed after the turnaround for the most part. He did a good job in my opinion and I look forward to seeing how he can do here.

this is great, I can see webOS becoming the best mobile enterprise solution under this guy. Throw in some HP expertise in enterprise quality hardware and we have a winner.