HP drafts new strategic plan

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HP drafts new strategic plan

Dismisses shake-up talk.

HP is formulating what it calls a "bold" plan for its future under new chief executive Leo Apotheker, but dismissed a report that it would reshuffle its top executives.

The world's No. 1 U.S. computer maker, which has been roiled since the surprise exit of former CEO Mark Hurd in August, is expected to set out a new strategy soon, but the company said it would make the plan public in its own time.

Earlier on Friday, the Wall Street Journal, citing unnamed sources, published a report that HP planned to invest more in its software, networking and storage businesses, while promoting a key executive to vice chairman.

"Speculation today about HP is being passed off as fact and is not accurate," an HP spokeswoman said in an e-mailed statement.

"HP is formulating a bold, solid plan for its future, a plan it will share with its employees, shareholders, customers and partners in due course, and certainly not in response to speculation."

The Journal report said Ann Livermore, the head of HP's US$57 billion enterprise business, would become vice chairman and a member of the board.

It said the enterprise business would then be split up, with executive vice presidents Dave Donatelli and Tom Hogan running the equipment and the services businesses respectively.

The report said Apotheker is working with members of HP's board to draw up the plan, which could be made public around March to coincide with HP's annual shareholders meeting.

The former head of German software company SAP, Apotheker took over as HP's CEO in November.

Hurd, who left under a cloud following a scandal involving a female contractor, is now an executive at rival Oracle.

(Reporting by Nadia Damouni, Ritsuko Ando and Bill Rigby; editing by Andre Grenon, Gary Hill)

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