After agreeing to acquire Autonomy and indicating that they will be shutting down the WebOS brand and spinning off their hardware business earlier this month, Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE:HPQ) has been on a downward spiral. This past Friday, the company stock price dropped to the point where HP’s market cap as a whole lost $16 billion. Analysts blame the drop entirely on poor upper management decisions, specifically around Leo Apotheker’s visions. This is HP’s worst single-day stock price fall since the Black Monday stock market crash in October 1987.
Leo Apotheker joiend HP as CEO this past November and the company has lost almost 44% of its value ever since. “We wonder whether activist investors will — and should — begin to exert pressure on the board,” stated Sanford Bernstein analyst Toni Sacconaghi. “If HP’s results don’t improve, the company will ultimately restructure its portfolio and/or replace its leadership.”
Every time that Leo Apotheker gets on conference calls with investors, the stock goes down substantially said Becker Capital Management fund manager Pat Becker Jr. When Apotheker was asked about HP’s PC division, Apotheker said that the decision can range from an outright sale to a spinoff to a potential “nontransaction.”