Friday, March 23, 2012

HP CEO: Layoffs may be coming; unhappy investors drive shares down

Woe is HP (NYSE: HPQ). The struggling company saw investors express their lack of faith in CEO Meg Whitman's plans to reorganize the company, dropping its share price more than two percent yesterday (it was down another 0.6 percent pre-market) to $23.46.
Whitman this week combined the printer and PC group, tweaked the Enterprise business, and said that she couldn't promise there wouldn't be job cuts as executives continued to try and determine the right course of action for the tech company.
All she could promise, as she did during her first earnings call for the company, would be that there would be plenty of change and that HP's recovery would take a long, long time, and that some savings show up on the bottom line this year.
During a meeting with HP employees Wednesday, Whitman, who has only been on the job for six months, told employees that in order to advance the recovery efforts "everything is on the table."
"We're not at a point yet to even begin to think about the number of people," who will be laid off as a result of the reorganization, she said.
The move to combine its printer and PC group creates a unit that had $65 billion in sales last year, more than half of HP's total sales.

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