It was a surprising day on Wall Street when Hewlett Packard’s famed CEO Meg Whitman stepped down from the company and said she would be leaving next February.
Shares of HP fell 6% after the high-profile executive made her announcement. In her place, company President and veteran Antonio Neri will be taking her place.
For months it had been speculated that Whitman would be taking over at Uber but she had denied the rumor by saying she was fully committed to HPE and planned to remain the company’s CEO. She had said during the time, “”We have a lot of work still to do at HPE and I am not going anywhere. Uber’s CEO will not be Meg Whitman.”
Whitman told CNBC that Uber did not have anything to do with her decision to step down from HPE. She will remain on the company’s board of directors.
She said, “I’m incredibly proud of all we’ve accomplished since I joined HP in 2011. Today, Hewlett Packard moves forward as four industry-leading companies that are each well positioned to win in their respective markets. 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.”
BMO Capital Markets analyst Tim Long said, “We are surprised by the timing of the CEO transition given commentary at the recent analyst day that seemed to imply a CEO transition was not in the offing.”
Disclaimer: We have no position in HP Inc. (NYSE: HPQ) and have not been compensated for this article.