HP: Lesser-Known Assets Fuel Growth

With a new CEO in place and a massive layoff behind it, the venerable computing giant is counting on a variety of deep assets to carry it far.
Hewlett-Packard's story is more than selling big servers, advanced storage systems and just about any kind of printer you can imagine.

Take its software business: It generates more than a billion dollars a year in revenue. HP Financial Services also is one of the largest financing organizations in the world.

Or how about that stuffy old Unix business? HP has a healthy share, along with IBM and Sun, of what's estimated to be a $16 to $18 billion market worldwide.

In an exclusive interview with internetnews.com, HP executives talked up the less-publicized sides of HP's business, the state of the company, and how it plans to compete for a larger slice of the enterprise computing market.

''We don't want to be a box provider. What we bring to the table is value-add and choice,'' said Mark Hudson, vice president of marketing for HP Enterprise Storage & Software. ''Our customers range from small up to Fortune 50 companies, and we can scale up or scale down depending on their needs, whether it's a choice of processor, like AMD or Intel systems or up to Itanium and a 128 CPU Superdome system running multiple operating systems.''

Hudson said HP's decision to add servers -- based on AMD's 64-bit Opteron processors -- to its mix of Intel-based systems has helped keep HP near the top of server providers and has been a boost to revenue. ''For example, with Opteron, we're selling a lot of four-way servers, which is a richer environment than the traditional x86 space [i.e. Intel]. And when you have more CPUs, that generally leads to more sales of memory and disk storage,'' he said.

HP's software effort is largely designed to enhance the value of the hardware it sells. It starts with the array of management software HP offers under the OpenView brand. ''We've been in the business of managing networks and servers for over 20 years,'' said David Gee, worldwide director of marketing for HP's management software business. ''The idea is to provide our customers with answers to some basic, though critical questions: What do I have? Where is it? Is it working?''

This article was first published on internetnews.com. To read the full article, click here.

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