HP can't afford to buy every one of our Desirable Dozen, but in the post-Mark Hurd era, the world's largest computer maker needs to consider acquiring more than a few of these companies. Here's who -- and why.
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Why pussyfoot around if you're serious about getting into enterprise software? Buying SAP would give HP a huge start. HP could treat the company as a standalone unit, much as SAP is handling its recent Sybase purchase. HP already has a team onsite at SAP's labs in Waldorf, Germany. The two companies have been working together for years to deliver optimized configurations and systems, including SAP BW Accelerator and SAP BusinessObjects Explorer, and tighter integration would position HP to go toe-to-toe with Oracle and IBM in the single-stack play.
Server Market SplitsvilleJust because the server market's in the doldrums doesn't mean innovation has ceased. Far from it -- server technology is enjoying the biggest renaissance since the dawn of x86 systems. But the primary driver is now service providers, not enterprises.