Many have been keeping their eyes on HP even since before they finally made their official announcement over a year ago that they would not only eventually be splitting into two companies, but that they would be putting a strong focus on 3D printing. Striking fear into a turbulent sea of competitors already fighting for market share–HP announced also that they would be setting the industry on fire with an exponentially faster, high precision multijet fusion 3D printing system that should offer greater quality, speed, and affordability.
Dividing into the publicly traded companies Hewlett Packard Enterprise and HP Inc., the once comprehensive technology giant is today headed into two centralized directions–respectively that of a hybrid company focused on workplace productivity and infrastructure, and one headed into the 3D printing industry, integrating their PC market share into that arena as well.
While this is certainly the content that makes headlines and keeps their marketing department hopping, only time will tell what the reality will be for what are now essentially two new companies competing in a roller-coaster paced, super competitive industry. While HP has historically said that they would enter the 3D printing market when it was time, they are later coming to the game than many other extremely savvy and innovative companies, not to mention titans like 3D Systems and Stratasys.
Announcements regarding their bright new future and ascent into 3D printing, replete with an entire division, have also been accompanied by bloodshed with pink slips. And while they are not the only tech titan restructuring and performing layoffs, such painful beginnings into their new phase only raise questions–and eyebrows–regarding how they can or plan to grow amidst all the changes. With restructuring and personnel changes taking place at iconic companies like MakerBot and 3D Systems too, this is currently not a new topic, but all are curious as to how the new HP entities will get a leg up, and especially as with the release of their new 3D printing system purported to happen next year, many other companies will already have had a whopping head start.
HP Inc., under the direction of new President and CEO Dion Weisler, while still having a strong position in the PC market will have a large portion of the attention directed to 3D printing, and also integrated with the Sprout, which is an all-in-one system meshing the PC, 3D scanner, digital design software, and 3D printing together.
“My goal is, in the very near future when you hear 3D printing, you only think of one company,” Weisler said.
As we reported last month, HP Inc. also plans to keep going strong in the market of office copiers and hardware for commercial printing despite challenges in the printer and PC markets that don’t show signs of letting up. According to Forbes, the company’s own guidance to analysts suggests that “revenue will decline about 2%, to $52 billion for the year ending Oct. 31, 2016.”
Meg Whitman, heading up Hewlett Packard Enterprise, as well as serving as chairman of the board for HP Inc., has obviously been handed a long-term task not without obvious stress as many watch, perched in judgment, and with some salivating over a possible failure of epic and historical proportions. Whitman has come out with a strong presence to begin though, and continues to forge ahead with positive momentum.
“The chance to reinvent a Fortune 50 company doesn’t come around often,” said Whitman in a recent press release sent to 3DPrint.com. “… We will make history when we launch Hewlett Packard Enterprise—a new company that will help customers use technology to quickly turn ideas into reality.”
“The world is moving faster than ever, and it’s no secret that technology is driving that speed. In every industry, IT strategy is now business strategy. And, winners and losers are decided by how quickly they can adapt to stay ahead in this exciting race.”
The entrance of this race is accompanied by a new digital publication–HPE Matter–which was formerly HP Matter. Just launched as a special edition with its new name, HPE Matter is meant to be a digital vehicle that will focus on the future for relevant businesses, as well as inspiring in terms of innovation and productivity–and how to achieve that today.
“We’re on the cusp of enormous change now, and it’s driven by what is called the idea economy,” states Whitman in HPE Matter. “Ideas have always been the lifeblood of businesses. The difference now is from idea to realization of that idea to actually being in business has gone from years to potentially–days.”
“Our sole objective is ensure the success of our customers as they navigate this new style of business powered by IT,” says Whitman. “In your career, the chances that you get to reinvent a Fortune 50 company, I’d say, are almost zero–and that’s an exciting opportunity for us.”
Stressing that all companies must be able to move forward in the new and required business infrastructure style emerging worldwide, Whitman points out that all entities must adapt in terms of handling data, cyberthreats, and allowing for better productivity in a world that is already massively different than what we were all experiencing just five years ago.
As HP Inc. and HPE commence forward, beginning a new life as two separate, non-competing entities amidst huge publicity and a wild dash out of the starting gate, all will be curious to see if this new beginning helps them win the race–and to see if they can rise to the top again, perched atop the shining, shooting star that is 3D printing technology. This week surely marks history as one of the companies most of us have been familiar with all of our lives makes a huge change in preparation for the future that involves pushing a lot of boundaries–and hopefully, much success. Discuss this story in the HP 3D Printing forum thread on 3DPB.com.