Strategy Clues With New Head of HP's PC Group?

Stephen DeWitt takes on new duties with PC group.

HP (NYSE:HPQ) announced today it's appointed a former executive of Sun and Azul Systems to a leadership post in its Personal System Group (PSG).

Stephen DeWitt's new role as senior vice president for the Americas region of PSG is effective immediately. He replaces Mike Larson, whom HP said is retiring after 12 years of executive posts at both HP and Compaq. DeWitt was president and CEO of Azul Systems and was a vice president at Sun after the company bought Cobalt Networks where he was also CEO.

Sun later phased out the line of server appliances based on Cobalt's technology.

HP said its PSG portfolio includes PCs, mobile products, client virtualization and connected entertainment solutions, Internet services and support for consumers, small to mid-size business and enterprise customers.

IDC analyst Richard Shim said HP is already a market leader in PCs and notebooks and doesn't expect any dramatic change in strategy. "But that doesn't mean there aren't new opportunities for HP and I'm sure they are not sitting still," Shim told "There are a lot of opportunities in gaming and vertical markets and even ways to segment mundane areas like all-in-one systems. I could see them bifurcate the all-in-ones into a 'high end' and 'value' system lines, for example."

At HP DeWitt reports to PSG executive vice president Todd Bradley.

"From consumer software to midmarket and enterprise hardware, Stephen has more than 20 years of experience as a high-energy, hard-charging technology executive driving product development, operations, marketing, direct and indirect sales, and customer support," Bradley said in a statement. "He has demonstrated his ability to forge high-performing teams that architect and execute aggressive strategies for profitable growth across a variety of Silicon Valley innovators, and I'm confident he'll do the same for PSG's largest region."

At Azul Systems, DeWitt became embroiled in a major patent dispute with his former employer Sun in 2006, which accused the company of infringing on six patents, misappropriating trade secrets and breaking non-competition agreements. Sun announced it settled the case last year under confidential terms it said were favorable to Sun.

TAGS: services,virtualization,PC,marketing,HP

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