HPE boss Meg Whitman to step down as CEO, Antonio Neri to take over

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HPE boss Meg Whitman to step down as CEO, Antonio Neri to take over
Meg Whitman

Hewlett Packard Enterprise chief executive Meg Whitman, who took the one-time Silicon Valley behemoth from a debt-ridden company with long-in-the-tooth products into two smaller companies, is stepping down as CEO as of 1 February 2018.

HPE president Antonio Neri, the driving force behind the company's charged-up software-defined enterprise portfolio, will take over the top job.

Whitman, meanwhile, will remain a member of HPE's board of directors.

"I'm incredibly proud of all we've accomplished since I joined HP in 2011," Whitman said in a prepared statement. "Today, Hewlett Packard moves forward as four industry-leading companies that are each well positioned to win in their respective markets," she said, referring to HPE, HP Inc. and the spun-off software and service businesses.

"Now is the right time for Antonio and a new generation of leaders to take the reins of HPE. I have tremendous confidence that they will continue to build a great company that will thrive well into the future."

Whitman accomplished a miraculous turnaround of the company which had US$12.5 billion in debt and a demoralised partner network when she took over as chief executive in September 2011.

"During the past six years, Meg has worked tirelessly to bring stability, strength and resiliency back to an iconic company," said Pat Russo, chairman of HPE's board of directors. "Antonio is an HPE veteran with a passion for the company's customers, partners, employees and culture. He has worked at Meg's side and is the right person to deliver on the vision the company has laid out."

Whitman said she always believed the next chief executive should come from HPE.  "The board unanimously agreed that Antonio should be my successor," she said.

Neri, 50, joined Hewlett Packard in 1995 as a customer service engineer in the EMEA call centre and has worked in nearly every part of the business. He took over the Enterprise Group in 2015 and was named president in June.

"The world of technology is changing fast, and we've architected HPE to take advantage of where we see the markets heading," said Neri in a prepared statement. "HPE is in a tremendous position to win, and we remain focused on executing our strategy, driving our innovation agenda, and delivering the next wave of shareholder value."

This article originally appeared at crn.com

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