HPs Enterprise Group Poised to Make Noise

Enterprise Systems Group VP Peter Blackmore says now that the issues of integrating Compaq are behind HP, it is moving forward to build the ESG and the company.

The second quarter was an eventful one for Hewlett-Packard Co.s Enterprise Systems Group.

Earlier this month, the Palo Alto, Calif., company realigned its three hardware divisions—covering servers and storage products—into a single business unit and strengthened the groups ties with the services organization to present a more integrated business approach.

That was a prelude to the announcement the following week, when Chairman and CEO Carly Fiorina announced HPs Adaptive Enterprise strategy, an initiative that brings together new and enhanced hardware, software and services in a more holistic way to offer customers an integrated infrastructure that is agile and flexible enough to meet a businesss changing needs.

Key to the new initiative—which builds off of HPs early adaptive infrastructure strategy—are the hardware and software found within the Enterprise Systems Group, or ESG. At the center of that is Peter Blackmore, the groups executive vice president and the man in charge of bringing the unit into profitability by the end of the year.

For Blackmore, the reorganization and the introduction of the Adaptive Enterprise strategy marked a shift for the company, an end to the issues of integrating Compaq Computer Corp. and a start forward to build the ESG and the company.

"It is absolutely [a shift]," Blackmore said in an interview with eWEEK. "Now, going forward, its how we compete toe-to-toe in the market and how do we grow faster than the market. The integration is behind us."

The enterprise group just completed a second quarter that saw its loss drop from $83 million in the first quarter to $7 million in the three months that ended April 30. Blackmore said the numbers are an indication of HPs growing strength in the marketplace as it completes the absorption of Compaq, which for about $19 billion.

"Were obviously in very good position to have a good portfolio, so the strength of that came through with a better margin," he said.

Now the trick is to parlay that into becoming a profitable business unit sometime in the second half of the year, something Fiorina promised on Tuesday during a conference call with analysts and reporters when she announced the companys second-quarter earnings.