Six ways of looking at a merger

Technology news seldom breaks before 8:00 a.m., bur when it does, I do my best to rise to the occasion.

One morning I’d barely gotten in the door when I heard about what was, at the time, the biggest merger in the history of the IT industry, Compaq’s 1998 acquisition of Digital Equipment Corp.

We started making calls and rustling up our sources, but in some ways time was on our side. I was covering the merger for Computer Dealer News, a publication that only comes out every two weeks. We were able to spend days afterwards getting comment from resellers and businesses affected by the deal. We had a Web site, but we offered little in the way of daily news (and as a result, had few daily visitors).

When Hewlett-Packard said it was going to merge with Hewlett-Packard on Sept. 4, I heard the news on the radio before I even left the house, but I already felt behind schedule. In a sense, we’ve been on the run ever since — or more precisely, the story has been on the run from us. We have tried to keep our readers as informed as possible about the effects of the deal on their businesses, but shareholder politics and legal obstacles have kept HP and Compaq from explaining their strategy in greater detail.

As you’ll see in today’s special edition of ITBusiness.ca Update, many customers, resellers and business partners are cautiously waiting to see the new HP prove itself in the months ahead. In the meantime, I thought I’d recap some of my initial reactions as the drama has unfolded so far. As always, however, your feedback provides us the best way of properly covering the issues involved. I look forward to hearing your stories as HP continues to evolve.

When Carly met Capellas
9/4/01 5:00:00 PM – With her Compaq comrade at her side, the HP superstar faces her biggest challenge yet

Family feud
12/10/01 5:00:00 PM – The Hewletts and the Packards step out of the shadows to take on Carly and the gang

Fiorina, party of two
12/14/01 5:00:00 PM – If HP broke bread with CGI, it might learn a thing or two about successful mergers

Beg the HP way
3/15/02 5:00:00 PM – The company’s online plea for merger support is tight-lipped but earnest

It ain’t over ’til it’s over
3/20/02 5:00:00 PM – And that’s why we should hold off on declaring a winner in the HP/Compaq merger battle

The Compaq worth keeping
5/1/02 5:00:00 PM – At HP the tough decisions will come after the merger. Here’s some advice

Comment: sschick@itbusiness.ca

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