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HP Split Set for Nov. 1

CEO Meg Whitman says during the HP Discover show that the new Hewlett-Packard Enterprise will focus heavily on the cloud.

HP Enterprise

Hewlett-Packard will make its split official Nov. 1, CEO Meg Whitman confirmed this week during the company's HP Discover 2015 in Las Vegas.

HP executives have targeted the fall as the time for the company to break in two since the plan was first announced in October 2014. According to reports, Whitman during her keynote address pinpointed the exact date and said that the cloud will be a key focus of one of the new companies that will sell enterprise IT solutions and services.

The breakup will create two massive companies. Hewlett-Packard Enterprise—of which Whitman will be CEO—will deal in everything from servers, storage and networking products to cloud infrastructure technologies and services, while HP Inc. will sell PCs and printers. Much of the focus at the show this week has been on Hewlett-Packard Enterprise, according to The New York Times.

Whitman not only talked about what her new company will focus on, but that it will grow through a combination of in-house work and outside acquisitions, according to Bloomberg. HP already has become more active in recent months in buying other companies, as evidenced by such acquisitions as Aruba Networks for $2.5 billion and, most recently, ConteXtream, which offers a carrier-grade software-defined networking (SDN) fabric for network-functions virtualization (NFV) environments.

The CEO said that her company will continue to pursue mergers and acquisitions (M&As) where they make sense, telling Bloomberg TV that "we will augment our core innovation that we do internally, what we call organic innovation, with M&A."

Whitman for several years resisted calls by some industry observers to get rid of HP's PC business. They argued that the company's enterprise business would thrive without the PC business taking away attention and money from it. HP is the world's second-largest PC maker behind Lenovo, but the global PC market has struggled over the past several years due to competition from tablets and other mobile devices.

The CEO had said that the company was "better together," and that the PC business gave HP much needed scale. However, last year, she said, HP was healthy enough to split in two, and that doing so would enable each new company to better focus on their respective market segments.