Despite HP's dogged determination before the vote that the Board stability was all-important, the new reality is that the vote was pretty damning. So, some big changes, pleasing many shareholders.
Whitworth, the activist board member, is in as interim chairman, Lane is still on the board, but stands down from Chairman, And Hammergren and Thompson walked. Well, that sort of surprised the analysts! And to some degree, me too. Honorable actions by the three to step down, don't you think?
Love to have been a fly on the wall for those discussions. I'll bet Meg had a lot to do with it. I have been more impressed as we watch Meg's performance than I ever expected when she started. And I have to say, in public, that I think Ray Lane is first-rate in general, never mind the brickbats and the low confidence vote by shareholders. He had a lot more to do with Oracle's success for years than he got credit for, and he has been solid with respect to Enterprise Computing, which HP still has to solve.
The other two -- Hammergren and Thompson -- are non-entities, never visibly did much, no great loss. Wachovia was a total failure in the bank meltdown, McKesson is a dealer channel distributor of pharma, maybe had a little input on Best Buy shelves???
But again, the notes flying around the Internet -- five Chairmen in ten years; compare that to Dave Packard, in that seat end-to-end for fifty-five years.
And now, some openings.... Who will want the $325,000 for six half-day meetings per year?