Todd Bradley packing-up from Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE:HPQ)?
Todd Bradley has been unexpectedly shifted from leadership of Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE:HPQ)’s $60B Printing and Personal Systems Group. This kind of a change is more often than not an indicator that the person concerned may be planning on moving away from the company. Speculation is rife that Bradley may perhaps be moving into the CEO role at Dell. People in the know have said that Bradley has very categorically told Meg Whitman the HPQ CEO that Dell has not contacted him. Sources at Dell have apparently confirmed that there is no opening for Bradley at the company.
The objective view
If you look at the situation without letting the widespread rumors taint it, it’s not so unbelievable that Bradley will be moving to Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE:HPQ) channel relationships. It conducts business via a global network of resellers. In turn, these resellers sell HP services and products directly to various businesses. In recent years this particular business has been worn threadbare. This segment is a crucial one for the HPQ as almost 70% of the company’s overall business comes from it.
Channel sales account for around 80% of the company’s sales in the Printing and Personal Systems Group as well as around 60% of sales in the Enterprise Group. Bradley’s job will be to mend those business bonds, especially in China and with his connections, it seems like he is the best candidate for it.
In Jan 2013 HPQ rolled out some revised rules of engagement for all its salespeople. These chalk-out what will be accepted and what will not, where working with channel partners comes into the picture. The revised rules were formally announced at the company’s Global Partner Conference that was held in Las Vegas in February. These rules were part of Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE:HPQ)’s broader attempt to re-build trust in the channel. These were a necessity as some HP salespeople, probably spurred on by the vacuum in leadership, had been working around the partners, in deals.
Some were also taking deals directly and cutting out the channel partners altogether. Three CEO changes in as many years is not a great way to retain control of any business and salespeople were taking advantage. The revised rules curb all that and hopefully under Bradley’s leadership, the channel will be back on track.