The company is planning to combine the once-joined units to minimize slippage in its printer business.
Pressed to turn around the sagging momentum of its printer unit, Hewlett Packard is planning to merge the unit with its PC operation, according to a report in Wednesday's Wall Street Journal.
Long the profits star of HP, the printer unit has been shifted around in recent years as the company seeks to squeeze more revenue and profit from its printers. The printer and PC operations had been combined early in the decade, but HP CEO Mark Hurd separated the units soon after he took over the helm of the firm four years ago.
Now, after the PC operation has gained traction and the printer operation is slipping, he is said to be considering putting the two units together again.
The newspaper said the plan under consideration would place PC unit head Todd Bradley in charge of a new combined PC-printer unit. The status of Vyomesh Joshi, currently the head of the printer unit, is unclear. Joshi has perennially been sought by headhunters as a CEO because of his successful leadership of the printer unit over the years. In some years, the printer unit delivered 70% of HP's profits.
Under Bradley, HP's PC unit has moved into first place in the shipments category and the company is forecasting a 3-5% growth for the unit in fiscal 2010. The company is predicting growth of zero to 2% in its printer operation for the same period. The printer unit remains HP's more profitable operation.
A merger of the two operations makes some sense because HP PCs are often sold with HP printers. And, along with HP's more aggressive move into enterprise IT-oriented services, the company has been attempting to encourage users to print more. For instance, the HP Photosmart Premium, announced in June, connects wirelessly to the Web and can print maps and other documents directly from the Internet.
In addition, a HP-Canon printing alliance formed earlier this month enables HP to use Canon's imageWare Enterprise Management Console and Canon Multifunctional Platform. With HP's EDS subsidiary supplying key workflow software and services, the collaboration helps enterprise IT users print more documents directly from the Web.
InformationWeek Analytics has published an analysis of application performance. Download the report here (registration required).
How Enterprises Are Attacking the IT Security EnterpriseTo learn more about what organizations are doing to tackle attacks and threats we surveyed a group of 300 IT and infosec professionals to find out what their biggest IT security challenges are and what they're doing to defend against today's threats. Download the report to see what they're saying.
2017 State of IT ReportIn today's technology-driven world, "innovation" has become a basic expectation. IT leaders are tasked with making technical magic, improving customer experience, and boosting the bottom line -- yet often without any increase to the IT budget. How are organizations striking the balance between new initiatives and cost control? Download our report to learn about the biggest challenges and how savvy IT executives are overcoming them.