Autonomy Confirms In Talks With US Giant Hewlett-Packard

Date : 08/18/2011 @ 2:32PM
Source : Dow Jones News
Stock : Autonomy (AU.)
Quote : 2549.0  0.0 (0.00%) @ 2:30AM
Autonomy Corporation share price Chart

Autonomy Confirms In Talks With US Giant Hewlett-Packard

Autonomy Corporation (LSE:AU.)
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Autonomy Corp. PLC (AU.LN) Thursday confirmed that it was in talks with U.S. giant Hewlett-Packard Co. (HPQ) about a possible offer for the U.K. data-analytics company.

Autonomy was responding to recent press reports that the world's biggest computer maker was close to a $10 billion takeover deal of the company.

"It would make perfect sense for one of the big data-base players to want to own Autonomy--the software is indeed unique and growing in importance," said Tim Daniels, TMT Strategist at Olivetree Securities.

H-P may announce plans as early as Thursday, according to people familiar with deal. These plans could include H-P spinning off its personal computer business and using Autonomy to boost a software and services platform, according to some reports.

"H-P would be buying this as part of a refocus of the business on software. They have been talking for a while about a focus on software--clients now don't have a problem accumulating data, the problem is the structuring of it and Autonomy's software does this," Daniels added.

H-P is expected to report its latest quarterly earnings after the U.S. market closes.

The technology giant has been under investor pressure because of what is seen as its underperforming stock price, and there have been calls to explore options for its low-margin PC business.

H-P was also in the spotlight after its former Chief Executive Mark Hurd left the company last year amid a scandal, and current CEO Leo Apotheker stepped in.

Autonomy has a market value of about GBP3.5 billion. H-P is at $62.4 billion.

-By Marietta Cauchi, Dow Jones Newswires; +44 207 842 9241;

(Gina Chon of the Wall Street Journal contributed to this article.)

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