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Hewlett-Packard Company Message Board

  • nielsboar nielsboar Aug 5, 2003 11:09 PM Flag

    Carly Fiorina interview with Forbe's

    by: oversieze 08/05/03 06:29 pm
    Msg: 40653 of 40660

    She sees a great tech reckoning coming that will unleash cataclysmic consolidation. She says that in the past, high tech grew at five times the growth of the economy (GDP), but it will now grow at only two times GDP. She says the business model that worked for tech in the 1990s will not work in the future. Corporations are already running with the greatly improved productivity that tech provided them in the 1990s. Further gains in productivity will be hard to come up with, so corporate customers will no longer jump to accept new tech products so easily. Tech companies will have to provide more service and power, and at lower costs. The result will be that the tech sector will have to lay off many more workers and outsource to lower cost countries in an effort to survive. "Some companies will get rolled up (acquired), others will slowly slip away. The easy growth they achieved in the past does not prepare them for the slower future." It is her belief that many tech companies with good products that can't create new markets or steal business from competitors will be valued like the old-line maker of washing machines.

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    • Carly the visionary, lol. Did Forbes tell you what Carly's background is, that she has come to be able to "know all and tell all" in the technology sector? She's a Medieval History and Philosophy major, with an MBA in marketing from a 3rd rate B-school, and a "fast track" meaningless additional credential from MIT's B-school. Does she have a degree in engineering? No. Has she worked in product design, or have much of a clue as to how the stuff works? No. Her thing is marketing, which to her evidently has something to do with passing out flowers and baloons, redesigning company logos to make them banal (e.g. Lucent's "sloppy circle", HP's "invent"), and getting "sales" via undercutting the competition to the point of losing money, or via financing those sales yourself (i.e. give the stuff away free, in exchange for i.o.u.s that might never be redeemable).

      Can anyone point to one lasting business success that Carly has ever had, while at AT&T, Lucent, or HP? Can anyone identify why Carly is actually qualified to be CEO of HP? Every time I've asked that question in the past, I've either gotten no answer, or answers such as "she wouldn't have been hired if she weren't great". But no one actually can identify why Carly has this job. Even at AT&T, she evidently didn't start moving up career-wise until she caught the eye (romantically) of HP's highly placed executive Frank Fiorina. Now whether Frank actually helped move her up the ladder in ways other than giving her advice about how to do it, one will never know. But to me it says that Carly is just a 3rd rate history-philosophy major, who got lucky by marrying a top executive at a company where promotions seem to be based on "pull" rather than ability and track-record. Even Carly's "success" at Lucent turned out to be ephemeral, as that company collapsed shortly after she departed. To my thinking, the "success" at Lucent was never real in the first place.

      So now Carly brings that background to HP, and she's quoted in Forbes as some kind of sage prognosticator. What a laugh. She's basically "Chauncey Gardner" of Being There, someone with very little real-world knowledge who gets taken seriously by an adoring press. My guess is that HP's receptionists know as much about the future of tech as Carly does. Maybe more. Those who take Carly's prognostications seriously are setting themselves up for major disappointment. You've got to realize that Carly sees being a CEO as a "performance", as in an act - she's said so herself (used that exact word: performance). So she seemingly "acts" like she knows what she's talking about, as part of that "performance". I don't buy into her "act". Just my opinions.

      • 6 Replies to Alex1444
      • "Can anyone point to one lasting business success that Carly has ever had,..."

        Sure...she beat the pants off an anti-merger coalition of WH+other family interests and whiny employees (who would be denied their sinecure in a company that would have to enter the real world) and pointed the company into the future. She won that battle and is now executing a plan that is receiving generally favorable review in the financial press.

        Now, what have you done for HPQ, except whine?

        HPQ Long

      • As always, good post, Alex. Good to see you visit, as you invariably bring with you the ring of truth.

      • Wonderful reference to Chauncey Gardner.

      • Great Post Alex...

        _____________________________________________
        You've got to realize that Carly sees being a CEO as a "performance", as in an act - she's said so herself (used that exact word: performance). So she seemingly "acts" like she knows what she's talking about, as part of that "performance". I don't buy into her "act". Just my opinions.
        ________________________________________

        The simple way of describing this is that CF is "marketing" herself just as the inane "invent" is meant to market PCs. What you have is a very sophisticated used car saleswoman.

        Remember John Akers CEO of IBM in the 80s? He rose through the ranks as a SALESMAN, became CEO, and almost destroyed the company. Then the IBM board went out and got an businessman named Gerstner who looks at profits and finances and the bottom line to do what he could to clean the place up- meaning look at everything they sell and see if it is important and profitable.

        The result? He slowly but surely reduced big blue's dependence on the hopeless PC business and started the shift to services in the mid 90's.

        Meanwhile the new compaq's marketing wizardess believes she can turn a shit business like selling PCs into caviar just by branding and bullshit. Ain't gonna work. PK.

      • Whoops, when I wrote:

        <<< Even at AT&T, she evidently didn't start moving up career-wise until she caught the eye (romantically) of HP's highly placed executive Frank Fiorina>>>

        I meant of course AT&T's Frank Fiorina, not HP's. Sorry about that. Again, just my opinions, as is my opinion that HPQ stock will go to $5 before the end of 2004. And sadly for me, I have yet to take a short position or buy put options, so there's no particular benefit to my seeing the stock go down at this point.

    • lol...In my opinion, it's fair to say, she is always removed from reality. As concerns this business anyway.

    • Is ther any doubt where the story of Walter Hewlett's "Bohemian Grove" appearance came from?

      Was obviously fed to News.com by HP. HP spends alot of money at CNet.

      Story made Mr. Hewlett look like a fool - all part of a well-funded and ultimately successful smear campaign.

      http://news.com.com/2100-1001-275678.html?legacy=cnet

    • The "she" I was referring to was Susan Packard Orr. Is that the "she" to whom you are referring?

      HPQ Long

    • Excellent additions Alex!

      Glad to see you back posting again.

      Colonel Buck

    • Thanks Col. Buck, great to see your posts here too. Actually I see now that my last "bullet" on part 2 is a duplicate of one of yours. One other one is similar, but different - the "employees support this" claim, made at different times, different events. So other than my one mistaken duplication of yours (the pre-planned pay hikes, denied by Carly), it's a pretty good list. And I bet there's a lot that we've missed or forgotten.

      I was thinking of a good ad for MasterCard, based on Carly's antics:

      "Buying votes via 'employee retention' bonuses - 600 million dollars"

      "Influencing votes via massive company-provided advertising - 200 million dollars"

      "Borrowing money from investment bankers to presumably get the votes of their managed mutual funds - 4 billion dollars borrowed"

      "Having your own company, with the board of directors in your back pocket - priceless"

      "There are some things money can't buy. For everything else, there's the HP shareholders' treasury".

    • LOL!!! I love it!

      Unfortunately for the shareholders and employees, it is right on the money.

      Colonel Buck

      Btw, I'm still hopeful that the Cubs will win the world series this year. My 25-1 shot seems a better bet than HPQ these days.

    • lol...love it!

    • "Capellas walked away with $15
      million after less than a year,..."

      This issue has been discussed thousands of times here. MC left with $14MM because he was CONTRACTUALLY owed that sum whether he worked for 11 months or 30 seconds. That was a deal he struck with his former employer, CPQ, and the trigger for payment was pulled when the merger passed. The issue was discussed in the pre-merger proxy and only those who failed to read and understand it were caught unaware. HE WAS OWED THE MONEY BECAUSE OF A PRE-EXISTING AGREEMENT.

    • Alex,

      Good to read your pithy comments again.

      I ignore everything that comes from HP's press machine. As an HP retiree and stockholder I pay attention to only 2 things.

      1) Stock Price

      2) 10-Q and 10-K filings. Carly and her minions can press release you to death, but unless they want to go to jail they have to basically tell the truth in their SEC disclosures. If all the HPQ longs bothered to analyze HP's financial statements instead of Carly's press releases they might actually learn something.

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