HP to Buy Aruba Networks for $3 Billion
HP also is getting a growing company: Aruba had $729 million in sales in fiscal 2014 and has seen a growth rate of 30 percent a year over the past five years. HP wants to leverage Aruba's technology and expertise to enable customers to more easily shift their legacy networks to an architecture more adapted to the growing mobility-centric workplace, a trend that will be accelerated as the 802.11ac standard becomes more widespread. The standard will mean faster speeds and improved access to cloud-based applications. The deal for Aruba will give HP the tools to help in this transition, according to Whitman. "Enterprises are facing a mobile-first world and are looking for solutions that help them transition legacy investments to the new style of IT," HP's CEO said in a statement. "By combining Aruba's world-class wireless mobility solutions with HP's leading switching portfolio, HP will offer the simplest, most secure networking solutions to help enterprises easily deploy next-generation mobile networks." It also will be a boon for Aruba and its customers, according to Ben Gibson, Aruba's chief marketing officer. Aruba will be able to leverage HP's global presence, broad customer base and channel partners to extend the reach of its wireless technology, Gibson told eWEEK. In addition, both Aruba customers and its 1,800 or so employees will see Aruba's leadership team stay intact as Orr and Melkote take the reins of HP's networking business, ensuring stability after the deal closes.In addition, Aruba and HP share similar thoughts in such areas as go-to-market efforts and the embrace of open networking systems that offer customers flexibility and choice, Gibson said. Such products as Aruba's AirWave management system for wired, wireless and remote networks and the ClearPass access management framework will remain vendor-agnostic and work with an array of third-party products, Gibson said. "It's an opportunity for Aruba to take our [wireless] solutions [and] combine them with the solid and very strong wired portfolio that HP brings to the market," he said.
HP officials also stressed the desire to leverage the Aruba brand as it grows its networking efforts.