- Hewlett Packard Enterprise CEO Meg Whitman is stepping down effective Feb. 1, the company announced Tuesday. Antonio Neri, president of HPE, who was promoted to president in June, is set to succeed Whitman as president and CEO and will also join the Board of Directors. Whitman will remain on the board.
- "Now is the right time for Antonio and a new generation of leaders to take the reins of HPE," said Whitman, in a statement. Whitman was integral in the company's turnaround strategy, which marked the largest corporate separation in history. Now, Hewlett Packard has four "industry-leading companies" that can compete in their individual markets, Whitman said.
- But following the news, the company's shares fell 7% after hours, CNBC reports. The company also released its Q4 2017 earnings Tuesday, posting a net revenue of $7.8 billion, up 5% year-over-year. But the company reported $28.9 billion in FY17 net revenue, down 4.7% year-over-year from $30.3 billion in FY16.
Whitman joined HP as president and CEO in September 2011, tasked with restructuring the lagging brand. She executed a five-year turnaround strategy, which ended in the creation of two separate tech portfolios — HP Inc., focused more on devices like laptops and printers, and HPE, which remained dedicated to enterprise tech.
The move was intended to strengthen the companies' portfolios and streamline offerings, but HPE struggled in the market. In an effort to continue honing the portfolio, HPE had spin off and merges of its enterprise services and software businesses.
The turnaround for HPE is in sight, especially following strong Q3 and Q4 performance. During FY18, the company will report with its much smaller portfolio and new leadership. With recent job cuts and a move away from its long-time headquarters, the company will need to maintain a more promising narrative in FY18 to ensure investor commitment.
But what's next for Whitman? Whitman's leadership is noted around the tech community and she was No. 7 on Fortune's Most Powerful Women list this year. There were even rumors earlier this year that she was under consideration to take over as Uber's CEO. So, the answer remains unclear, at least for the time being.