The merging of different companies into powerful transnational corporations is not surprising or annoying to anyone now. It is easier for those companies to survive under the conditions of tough competition together than separately. It stands the reason that such modern tendencies have also touched upon the computer industry.
The shareholders of Hewlett-Packard voted for a merging with Compaq on April 19. Hewlett-Packard General Director Carly Fiorina said at the press-conference that took place after the meeting of shareholders that the majority of shareholders supported the idea. She said that the advantage of the supporters of the merger was inconsiderable but sufficient. She stated that the majority of those shareholders that are not connected with the families of the company’s founders voted for the merger.
This hint is more than transparent. The matter is that Walter Hewlett, the son of one of the Hewlett-Packard founders, William Hewlett, is stubbornly against the idea of merging with Compaq. He says that this merger will not result in anything, since Compaq has difficulties selling its products, like other computer companies. The situation of Hewlett-Packard is better in this respect, since the company is oriented to production of a wide range of computer accessories, not only computers, but also printers, scanners, etc. However, Walter Hewlett’s opinion was not paid attention to. He could not change the development of events, since he only owns 19% of Hewlett-Packard’s shares. Hewlett himself refused to acknowledge his defeat. He claimed earlier that Hewlett-Packard was actually buying the votes of its largest shareholders, Deutsche Bank’s in particular. Hewlett went to court.
As a result of Hewlett’s claims, the US Office of the Attorney General required the information pertaining to the voting of the shareholders who voted for amalgamation with Compaq. The controversy has a very matter-of-fact basis: Walter Hewlett does not want to lose his influence on the company that was founded by his father, and furthermore, there was no place for Walter Hewlett in the new staff of the Board of Directors. It is thought that Carly Fiorina will be the director of the new company. She repeatedly mentioned that the united company would deal with everything: producing computers, printers, and manufacturing high production servers, which put into competition with the world’s number one computer company, IBM. Fiorina said that the income of the new company be over over $80 billion.
It is not known for the time being if Fiorina’s ambitious plans are going to be realized, but Walter Hewlett is not willing to take a step back, and he will do his best to put more and more obstacles in the way of the merger.
Vasily Bubnov PRAVDA.Ru
Translated by Dmitry Sudakov