John Paczkowski

Recent Posts by John Paczkowski

HP Would Rather Spin Off PC Business Than Sell It

Of the three strategic alternatives Hewlett-Packard proposed for its Personal Systems Group earlier this month, the company favors one in particular, and it’s not a sale to Samsung or Acer. HP would rather spin off its PC division than sell it outright.

“We prefer a spinoff as a separate company and the working hypothesis is that a spinoff will be in the best interests of HP’s shareholders, customers and employees,” an HP spokeswoman told Reuters. “However, we have to complete the diligence process and validate this assumption, including fully understanding the dis-synergies in separating the PSG business from HP.”

If HP does in fact spin off the PC business, the resulting company will likely be led by current PSG head Todd Bradley, who believes he’s the best guy for the job. “My intention would be to lead it through this transaction … and if it’s a standalone public company, to lead that,” he told Reuters, adding: “A standalone company could and will do what’s most required to drive value for shareholders and partners.”

Interestingly, Bradley said that tablets like HP’s ill-starred TouchPad will be among this standalone company’s product lines. “Tablet computing is a segment of the market that’s relevant, absolutely,” Bradley said. Odd to hear this, since HP canceled the TouchPad just six weeks after launching it, but evidently the category remains important to the company. Is Bradley here referring to webOS tablets, or their Windows counterparts? Hard to say, and HP declined to clarify.

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The problem with the Billionaire Savior phase of the newspaper collapse has always been that billionaires don’t tend to like the kind of authority-questioning journalism that upsets the status quo.

— Ryan Chittum, writing in the Columbia Journalism Review about the promise of Pierre Omidyar’s new media venture with Glenn Greenwald