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By eweek  |  Posted 2002-09-25 Print this article Print

: Fiorina: Rivals Moves Justify Compaq Deal"> Overall, Fiorina sought to assure HP customers and resellers gathered at the companys annual conference that the buyout of Compaq had strengthened, not weakened, the giant computer maker by extending its capabilities and giving it market leadership in several areas. Highlighting the companys broad reach, she noted that HP hardware powers 14 of the worlds largest stock exchanges, helps process two-out-of-three credit card transactions worldwide and is used to manage about 65 percent of the worlds energy infrastructure.
Speaking amid the high-tech industrys worst downturn in its history, Fiorina also argued that companies must continue to buy and upgrade their IT infrastructures, contending that most companies existing IT infrastructures are already outdated.
"Information technology is the ultimate team sport. The challenge is that many of you are trying to play the game with a quarterback and a system that last saw success five years ago," she said. A few years ago, Fiorina said, IT managers sought to integrate their data into the most stable platforms possible, but such architectures cant keep up with todays changing business demands. Citing an unspecified survey of technology managers, she said that the business environment is changing seven times as fast as the underlying IT technology—a problem she said system managers must address. "You are no longer rewarded for stability, you are rewarded for agility," Fiorina said, comparing the challenges facing todays system manager to those of a football coach. "You are no longer simply defending your own goal line, you are now charged with making up plays and moving the ball down field against a shifting, blitzing, lightning-fast opponent with only two minutes left to play," she said. More specifically, system managers now have to worry about more than simply deploying hardware, she said, they must also consider how to manage systems, distribute information, network, and adjust to changing workloads on the go. In order to address such a broad array of issues, she said, companies are increasingly going to be looking toward computer makers that can offer a broad range of hardware, software and services—precisely the reasons HP merged with Compaq. "We saw the opportunity to combine these two companies to create one great technology company," she said. "We will stake our claim on being the company that offers the best return on IT." Related Stories:
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