Could be the third CEO in a row to be fired by the board
The Hewlett-Packard (HP) board of directors is reportedly considering ousting chief executive officer Leo Apotheker and replacing him temporarily with former eBay CEO Meg Whitman.
Apotheker’s tenure in the company is less than a year so far, and he could be be the third CEO in a row to be ousted by the board, according to a Bloomberg report.
The move comes at a time when the company chief is facing criticism from different corners — from Wall Street, to shareholder lawsuits to some recent strategic decisions.
Apotheker has repeatedly slashed company sales forecast. In August, he confounded investors by killing off a line of mobile devices including the TouchPad and announcing the discontinuation of its webOS hardware. He also said that the company may spin off its PC division. HP’s $10bn deal to buy UK software house Autonomy has also been questioned by some analysts who consider it a too costly one for HP.
Dell’s founder and chief executive Michael Dell has hinted that HP may be making a mistake by exiting the PC market.
Dell rubbished reports that suggested that the PC era is over. He told the FT, "There are a billion and a half PCs in the world and while Gartner change their estimates here and there, they also estimate there will be two billion PCs in the world by 2014. So when I look at that, I think the idea that the PC is no longer here is complete nonsense."
He added, "You see PCs, tablets, you see smartphones. But those other devices aren’t necessarily replacing the PCs, so we are very committed to that part of the business, as part of this broader, end-to-end IT solutions company."