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HP: We aren't going to ship any products early next month

Logistics grind to a standstill for a week as one becomes two

Hewlett-Packard will not ship any products during the first week of August as the organisation splits into two operational entities.

The tech biz doesn’t legally separate until its new financial year from 1 November, but will function as two standalone firms from next month – PC and print in one, and everything else in the other.

A spokeswoman at the company confirmed the “operational transition” begins on 1 August: “During this time customers and partners will still be able to submit orders in the usual way."

“Those orders will be processed and fulfilled by either HP Inc, or Hewlett Packard Enterprise, depending on the order. Orders placed between 1 August and 6 August are estimated to begin shipping on 7 August,” she added.

In the UK, HP Inc – PC and print – will break away to create a new entity, with the remainder rebranded as Hewlett Packard Enterprise.

During the shipment blackout, HP will split the existing mega internal systems and transfer relevant data to HP Inc, including invoicing, sales history, outstanding customer orders, inventory and pricing information.

This is the biggest split of a technology firm in corporate history, with HP needing to allocate 2,800 applications and 75,000 application interfaces, as well as split its networks and global data centres.

Some 500 HPers are working on the break-up from the Separation Management Office, with senior exec and middle management roles now divided.

Senior channel sources at HP customers described the six-day exercise as sound business planning, and claimed that if this is the extent of the disruption then they’ll be mighty happy.

The message to customers from one opportunistic player was “get your orders in early if you have an urgent project or requirement”.

Given that HP’s Q3 of fiscal 2015 ends this month, the timing of the shipping shut-down could help sales out a little.

The rationale behind the split is that the two entities can focus on the respective markets, making quicker decisions on where to invest or restructure and concentrate on the different needs of customers.

The split was made public last autumn, and this, along with a subsequent slide in quarterly sales, has damaged HP’s share price. It seems investors aren’t sold on the value of the split, particularly as it is going to cost an estimated $2.4bn. ®

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