HP/Compaq: Merger finally gets green light

Hewlett-Packard has won the final battle in its lengthy campaign to take over Compaq.

Hewlett-Packard has won the final battle in its lengthy campaign to take over Compaq.

A judge has dismissed a lawsuit from former HP board member Walter Hewlett that sought to block the acquisition.

Hewlett later said he would not fight the ruling. "I have disagreed with the Board over the merits of acquiring Compaq, however I have always been dedicated to enhancing value for HP's stockholders," Hewlett said. "I will therefore now do everything possible to support the successful implementation of HP's acquisition of Compaq and encourage others to do the same."

The ruling clears the way for HP to launch the merged company on 7 May.

After a three-day trial last week the judge rejected Hewlett's allegations that HP executives publicly backed financial projections they privately knew the merged company would be unable to meet and that HP coerced a Deutsche Bank division to reverse its initial vote and support the acquisition.

"The public statements made by HP management about the progress of the integration process. . . were supported by the facts when they were made and were neither false nor misleading," the judge wrote.

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