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12/13/2010
01:16 PM
Doug Henschen
Doug Henschen
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HP Denies Neoview Cut, Hires SAP Exec

Appointment fuels speculation on impending acquisitions. Internal memo underscores commitment to business intelligence and analytics.

Hewlett-Packard has denied a report that it is backing away from business intelligence and its Neoview data warehousing solution. Meanwhile, HP confirmed late last week that it has hired software marketing veteran Marge Breya.

Breya joined HP from SAP, where she was an executive vice president and general manager reporting directly to Jim-Hagemann Snabe, co-CEO. Breya will serve as general manager of HP Software and Solutions and will report to Bill Veghte, executive vice president. Veghte, a 19-year Microsoft veteran who was hired in May, reports to Ann Livermore, executive vice president, HP Enterprise Business.

Whether HP's ambitions lie in BI, information management, middleware or business process management (BPM), Breya adds depth, breadth and marketing know-how to HP's team. She joined SAP through the acquisition of Business Objects, where she was chief marketing officer and general manager. Before that she was CMO at BEA Systems, the middleware and BPM vendor acquired by Oracle.

Breya's appointment was a topic of conversation among analysts and journalists attending last week's SAP Influencer Summit in Santa Clara, Calif.

Plenty of IT market watchers put data warehousing vendor Teradata, data integration vendor Informatica and BI vendor Microstrategy on HP's acquisition short list. But a play for any of these companies would mark a shift in strategy for HP, as it would be a move away from Neoview and software partnerships.

HP last week denied that a change in BI or Neoview strategy is in the works, specifically refuting a December 5 blog post by analyst Mark Smith of Ventana Research. Smith wrote that HP had suspended all efforts around Neoview and disbanded its Business Intelligence Solutions unit -- claims that HP denied.

"You can buy Neoview today, you can buy it tomorrow, you can buy it next week," an HP spokesperson told me.

It was a curious way to phrase a denial in that it begged the question, "What about next month or next year?" But the spokesperson stuck to saying that no changes had been announced pertaining to Neoview or the BI Solutions unit.

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