Meg Whitman And Friends: HP Prepares To Disrupt IT

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HP Discover Whitman

Hewlett-Packard Chairman, President and CEO Meg Whitman said during her Tuesday HP Discover keynote that her company is focused on doing what it takes to be a complete provider of solutions to customers, and backed it up by relying on her top lieutenants to drive home the message.

Whitman, who is overseeing the split of Palo Alto, Calif.-based HP into two separate Fortune 50 companies, started the afternoon's general session laying out her vision about how to meet the changing requirements of enterprise customers, and then yielded the stage to other HP executives to reinforce her message.

It was the right way to help customers and partners understand that a wide range of HP services will help the company to meet fast-changing customer requirements, said Dan Molina, CTO of Nth Generation Computing, a San Diego-based solution provider and HP channel partner.

[Related: HP's Whitman: 'Either You Are Being Disruptive, Or You Are Being Disrupted']

"Meg talked about the overall vision," Molina told CRN. "But she had the HP Enterprise Services leader deliver the message. And he brought in the other executives to show how services is the glue to holding everything together."

HP on Nov. 1 will be split into two separate companies -- Hewlett-Packard Enterprise, with its focus on data center infrastructure and the HP Helion cloud offerings, and HP Inc., with its target on becoming the leading personal systems and printing company, Whitman said.

"We will be even more innovative, and even more competitive [than we are now]," she said.

The industry is at a point where the cloud, big data and mobility are combining to make it easier than ever to create new ideas, but those ideas are held back by traditional IT infrastructures that are too rigid, Whitman said.

Today's entrepreneurs like Uber leverage the Web, digital services, and so on to develop new businesses, but are less likely to focus on creating IT infrastructures, she said. "Uber didn't need to invent new technology to start a business," she said. "It just took advantage of existing mobile and cloud infrastructures."

The new style of business demands a new style of IT, Whitman said. "But you have to pick a business partner with the breadth and experience you need," she said. "And HP is that partner."

Adapting to that new style of IT requires flexibility when it comes to developing infrastructures, Whitman said. "Some of our competitors come at this from a services perspective," she said. "Some come from a software perspective, or a hardware perspective. HP is the only company that brings it all together."

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