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"The bottom line is I am disappointed," he said. "I wanted Todd Bradley. He has been with the company for many years and knows the business. Why did [the board] have to go outside? I don't know what they are thinking.
"I question the Board's decision to get rid of Hurd in the first place. I have been selling HP for 20 years, and he was the best CEO -- bar none -- in supporting the channel. With Mark Hurd, we had a clear channel vision. I don't know Apotheker and I don't know what direction HP is going in. The question is: does he understand the channel and is he channel friendly?"
Another large HP solution provider, who asked not to be named, called Apotheker a poor choice to replace Hurd.
"What the hell are they thinking?" the solution provider said, referring to HP's board. "Candidly, I think it's a desperation move based on not having leadership in place and wanting to play to the stock holders. I mean, he's just not the right man for the job."
Bob Venero, CEO of Future Tech Enterprise, a Holbrook, N.Y.-based solution provider, half-jokingly wondered if Apotheker's hire was a knee-jerk response to Hurd joining Oracle or whether the HP board really believes he's the best man to help lead the company going forward.
Next: Filling Hurd's Shoes