HP's top channel leaders, led by Vice President Stephen DiFranco, reached out to reassure partners that the $123 billion computer giant remains completely committed to key channel objectives in the wake of the unexpected departure of former CEO Mark Hurd.
"In the wake of last week’s news, we want to assure you that HP’s channel teams remain absolutely focused on our objectives to deliver a broad and profitable line of products and services to our partners," wrote the HP Channel team leadership in an e-mail sent to thousands of HP partners signed by six top HP channel leaders. "HP’s commitment to the channel is a core component of its go to market strategy."
HP's top channel leadership and executives from all of the company's business units are gathering this week to discuss how to better leverage resources, improve operations and "better serve our channel," wrote the channel leaders. HP also confirmed that it will conduct its next Americas Partner Conference in 2011.
The channel communique comes after HP shares plunged nine percent to $42.15 last Friday in the wake of Hurd's unexpected resignation following a sexual harassment investigation. HP CFO Cathie Lesjak has been appointed interim CEO.
Solution providers have expressed shock and disappointment in the sudden resignation of Hurd. They said Hurd had made great strides in building out a strong sales channel that in many cases was working hand in hand with HP's own direct sales teams.
The channel leadership, however, emphasized to partners that HP's commitment to the channel is unwavering.
"Just this week, Cathie Lesjak, HP CFO and interim CEO, reiterated to the financial community and to our employees that our strategy of growing our product portfolio and our focus on selling to and leveraging our channel partners will not change," said the channel leadership team. "A key strength for HP is our channel’s ability to navigate through challenging times; delivering the best products, services and consulting to our mutual customers. Today, it is more important than ever for us to work together to maintain our channel momentum."
The channel leadership team reassured partners that the company will continue its Executive Connection Series which put HP's top executives in the sales trenches helping partners to close deals. Hurd himself was the biggest proponent of that program doing more than 50 solution provider roundtables in the course of a year that put him side by side with partners in front of hundreds of customers.
Next: Hurd's Resignation Has Not Impacted Channel Sales