The acquisition of Compaq by Hewlett-Packard (HP) was intended to rejuvenate the company's ageing product line and create a powerful global player able to offer products and services across the board. Instead it looks as though HP has created confusion in the marketplace with a lack of clarity over the direction that the enlarged organisation is heading in, and misunderstanding about the nature of the deal that was struck between the two companies. There is even some debate over the proper title for the new look HP.
Initially, HP issued a series of clear explanations of where the company was going especially in critical areas such as services and middleware. However, sudden changes to these plans which have seen HP abandon a technology neutral stance in services and pull out of the middleware market altogether have left customers and channel partners puzzled.
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This was first published in January 2003