Date
12 December 2017
Under Meg Whitman, HPE has aggressively shed assets and cut tens of thousand of jobs as it sharpened its focus on server and networking businesses. Photo: Reuters
Under Meg Whitman, HPE has aggressively shed assets and cut tens of thousand of jobs as it sharpened its focus on server and networking businesses. Photo: Reuters

HP Enterprise CEO Meg Whitman to step down

Hewlett Packard Enterprise Co. said on Tuesday that Meg Whitman was stepping down as chief executive officer early next year, sending its shares down 7.4 percent in trading after the bell, Reuters reports.

Whitman will be succeeded by current president Antonio Neri who takes over from Feb. 1.

During her six-year tenure at the helm of the company, Whitman engineered the biggest breakup in corporate history as part of a turnaround plan, creating HPE and PC-and-printer business HP Inc. from parent Hewlett Packard Co. in 2015.

Under Whitman, HPE has aggressively shed assets and cut tens of thousand of jobs as it sharpened its focus on server and networking businesses.

In September, HPE spun off its enterprise software businesses to British software company MicroFocus International Plc. in an effort to beef up its cloud services for corporate computing.

“I don’t think Meg Whitman was pressured to leave but rather she chose to do so as she fulfilled her objectives of making HPE a more nimble company and extracting as much value as possible from divestitures,” CFRA analyst Angelo Zino said.

Shares of HPE have risen nearly 47 percent since the split up in 2015.

“The departure of Meg Whitman as CEO will likely be viewed negatively by investors, as some might have been holding out hope that she would sell the remainder of the company,” Zino said.

Whitman, who previously headed eBay Inc., was reported to have been a leading candidate for the job of chief executive at Uber Technologies Inc.

Separately, the company reported net income of US$524 million, or 32 cents per share, for the fourth quarter ended Oct. 31, compared with US$302 million, or 18 cents per share, a year earlier. Revenue rose to US$7.66 billion from US$7.32 billion.

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