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From Selling Calculators To Making HPE Platinum: Holmans Marks 50-Year Relationship

Joseph F. Kovar

‘Tony Trujillo, the CEO at the time, struck a deal to sell the first HP-35 calculators to the University of New Mexico bookstore. Now we are a platinum level partner with HPE and a gold level partner with HP Inc,’ says John Santoru, Holmans USA president, CEO, and owner.

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Former Holamans CEO Tony Trujillo with one of HP’s calculators

Hewlett Packard Enterprise and HP Inc. solution provider Holmans USA last week celebrated its 50th anniversary as an HP partner.

The long-term partnership started when Holmans, which was founded 75 years ago by E.S. Holmans as a seller of maps and books known as Holmans House of Maps, sold the world’s first scientific pocket calculator, the HP-35, said John Santoru, president, CEO, and owner of the Albuquerque, N.M.-based solution provider.

Hewlett-Packard in 2015 divided itself into the enterprise-focused Hewlett Packard Enterprise and the PC and printer-focused HP Inc.

[Related: HPE CEO Antonio Neri To Partners: We Built GreenLake To Grow ‘With You And Through You’]

The HP-35, so named because it had 35 keys, was Hewlett-Packard’s first pocket calculator and the world’s first calculator with trigonometric and exponential functions. It was introduced in 1972 with a retail price of $395.

“Tony Trujillo, the CEO at the time, struck a deal to sell the first HP-35 calculators to the University of New Mexico bookstore,” Santoru told CRN. “Now we are a platinum level partner with HPE and a gold level partner with HP Inc.”

HP, and then HPE and HP Inc., have been the backbone of growth for Holmans USA, Santoru said.

“We still sell calculators,” he said. “Not a ton. But we do.”

Holmans USA still has an HP-35 calculator at the office, Santoru said.

“We kept one for nostalgia’s sake,” he said. “It still works.”

Holmans USA has grown far beyond that first university bookstore contract. The company now provides hardware and services around e-commerce, integration, supply chain management, security, and authorized services.

It also specializes in servicing the U.S. Department of Energy, and counts among its customers the Sandia National Laboratories, the Los Alamos National Laboratory, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Brookhaven National Laboratory, and Argonne National Laboratory.

“We’re also starting a managed services business, primarily for our commercial and SLED (state, local, and education) space,” Santoru said.

Joseph F. Kovar

Joseph F. Kovar is a senior editor and reporter for the storage and the non-tech-focused channel beats for CRN. He keeps readers abreast of the latest issues related to such areas as data life-cycle, business continuity and disaster recovery, and data centers, along with related services and software, while highlighting some of the key trends that impact the IT channel overall. He can be reached at jkovar@thechannelcompany.com.

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