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December 13, 2006

HP, Microsoft launch enterprise alliance

Hewlett-Packard Co and Microsoft Corp yesterday expanded their longstanding partnership with the announcement of three-year, $300m joint investment to target enterprise clients.

By CBR Staff Writer

The new sales campaign will target five specific areas where the companies see high demand and strong growth potential, said Ann Livermore, executive vice president for HP’s technology solutions group, at a press conference yesterday. They are: messaging and unified communications; collaboration and content management; business intelligence; business process integration; and Microsoft core infrastructure.

Together, these five areas represent about $50bn in IT spending opportunity in 2007 alone, said Microsoft COO Kevin Turner, citing IDC projections.

HP and Microsoft won’t actually be forming a new structural entity to market, develop and deliver the products and services, Livermore said. But both companies’ sales forces were ready to hit the ground, she claimed. HP already has some 3,000 employees in its vast services operations ready to work on the new venture, out of HP’s total of some 22,000 Microsoft professionals throughout the company.

The sales campaigns will differ for each type of product and service, Livermore added, whether this means that Microsoft HP, or even one of their channel partners makes first contact with clients.

Together, the two hope to drive new sales of Microsoft software and HP hardware and services, but there’s still plenty of room for existing and new industry partners in the targeted areas, said Peter Boit, Microsoft’s vice president for enterprise partners.

For example, Microsoft’s partnership for unified communications it struck earlier this year with Nortel won’t be affected, and Microsoft will still seek out other alliances in this space, he said. Plus there will probably be opportunities for three-way engagements that also include HP in this area, Boit added.

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