Meg Whitman stepping down as CEO will not affect HPE Canada, division says

The announcement that Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) Co.’s Meg Whitman will be stepping down as the company’s CEO early next year will not affect its Canadian division, an HPE representative has told ITWC.

Though no further information was given, the representative said “in terms of the implication for Canada, there is no change.”

Whitman herself revealed the news during a Nov. 21 conference call with investors, saying that she would be vacating her role at the end of the company’s next quarter, which will end on Jan. 31, 2018, but remain a director on its board.

In her place, she said, HPE president Antonio Neri will become president and CEO, and join the company’s board on February 1, 2018.

“This transition is possible because of all the work we have done during the past 6 years to transform HP,” Whitman said during the call. “Many of you will recall the challenges the company faced when I became CEO and will recognize how far we have come.”

A 22-year veteran of the company who was appointed president of HPE this past June, Neri began his HP career as a customer service engineer in 1995 before rising through the ranks, eventually running the company’s technology services business in 2011, and later its enterprise division in 2015, according to a Nov. 21 release.

Whitman, meanwhile, had served as president and CEO of the original Hewlett Packard company since September 2011, where she led its split into two separate divisions, HPE and HP Inc., in 2015.

Since then, HPE has famously struggled to compete in the enterprise technology sphere, recently reducing its workforce by 10 per cent worldwide, or around 5000 employees, in an effort to cut costs, with former HPE Canada president and managing director Charlie Atkinson among the losses.

Those efforts appear to be paying off, however, as HPE reported a quarterly revenue of $7.8 billion USD on Tuesday, though shares in the company fell by 6.2 per cent after Whitman announced she would be stepping down, according to Bloomberg.

“[S]ince the birth of HPE on November 2, 2015, we have delivered a total shareholder return of 89 per cent, which is more than three times that of the S&P 500,” Whitman said during Tuesday’s conference call. “By fixing, improving and repositioning the company I joined, HPE has worked its way into a strong competitive position ready to drive the next phase of shareholder value and you are starting to see the payoff in our results.”

“I know Antonio will have the same focus on delivering value for our shareholders going forward,” she said.

Our thanks to investment research platform Seeking Alpha for the transcriptions from HPE’s Nov. 21 Q4 earnings call.

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Eric Emin Wood
Eric Emin Wood
Former IT World Canada associate editor turned consultant with public relations firm Porter Novelli. When not writing for the tech industry enjoys photography, movies, travelling, the Oxford comma, and will talk your ear off about animation if you give him an opening.

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