New HP CEO: SAP's Leo Apotheker
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Ever since Mark Hurd was ousted from his role as CEO of HP, quite a few stakeholders have been wondering where the company plans to go next. The first piece of the puzzle fell into place on Sept. 30, when HP named Leo Apotheker as its new CEO. His appointment, which includes a seat on the company's board of directors, is effective Nov. 1, 2010. In choosing Apotheker, HP bypassed several highly placed insiders.
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An SAP veteran, Apotheker lasted less than two years as the company's CEO. He resigned from SAP under pressure on Feb. 7, 2010, when the company failed to deliver on its cloud and mobile market strategy, losing key marketshare to Oracle.
Apotheker's resignation came as SAP was locked in a fierce global market share battle with Oracle over the enterprise business applications that both companies develop and sell. These applications include accounting, financial management, general ledger, human resources and others that are the operational bedrock of all large enterprises. His resignation also came a little more than a week after SAP announced a 12 percent decrease in operating income for the full year 2009. In May 2010, only a few months after Apotheker left SAP, the company decided to acquire Sybase to help fill out those market needs.
In true tech-industry irony, Hurd was named co-president of Oracle on Sept. 6, one month after leaving HP in a forced resignation following charges of sexual harassment by a former HP employee. Hurd has since settled the complaint out of court.