Under Léo Apotheker, who arrived as the new CEO late last year, it’s been quite the opposite: While much of the tech sector thrives, HP has appeared chaotic and confused. Apotheker has lowered sales forecasts for three consecutive quarters. Dozens of top executives have departed. And in March he vowed to double down on webOS, the mobile operating system HP acquired when it bought Palm in early 2010, only to soon reverse his decision. On Aug. 18, Apotheker announced that HP will explore the sale of its $41 billion PC business and pull its Palm smartphones and tablets from stores. HP will essentially quit the consumer market to focus on business software. Its stock plummeted more than 20 percent on the news. Analysts are wondering aloud how much time the CEO has left, and the measured Toni Sacconaghi of Sanford C. Bernstein recently wrote that a leadership shakeup “would likely serve as a catalyst for the stock.” Apotheker declined to comment.
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