Can HP jumpstart its cloud computing effort?

Meg Whitman

Updated: Cloud computing has been designated a top priority for Hewlett-Packard which sees its legacy PC, server, and printing businesses under fire. Now it  looks like the company is retooling that key cloud effort, according to a report from Bloomberg News.

A new division, headed by Saar Gillai, is charged with weaving the disparate pieces of HP’s cloud strategy and together, according to the report which cites an internal HP memo as its source. One of HP’s problems has long been that it fields a diverse and sometimes incomprehensible array of products and services. That may have been fine when HP was top dog and could sell anything. Now, that lack of clarity is a serious problem for a company that’s been trying to downsize its way to profitability. (HP will cut 29,000 jobs before October 2014.)

Update: Gillai will report to Zorawar Biri Singh, SVP and GM of HP Cloud Services, according to a CRN report posted Monday night. CRN cited what appears to be the same internal memo.

If true, this news shows that Whitman, who took the helm at HP just over a year ago and initially pledged to stay the course while she sorted things out, is taking charge of this cloud effort.

It’s hard to gauge the take-up of HP’s ambitious cloud effort. It rolled out the public beta of its OpenStack-based cloud in May but things have been quiet on that front since. That is probably not good news

HP has been hurt by what can only be called a dysfunctional board, a series of strategies and CEOs that are introduced then jettisoned, and what some say is a counterproductive dependence on Microsoft. It’s hard to tell at this point whether tweaking its new cloud strategy is the right thing to do or just another stopgap measure.

Feature photo courtesy of Shutterstock user  drserg

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