Thursday, November 08, 2007

HP: What's bad for digital cameras is good for Print 2.0

HP (NYSE HPQ) issued a post-market-close press release yesterday that I found both interesting and unusual. The news has been well reported, but a few of the more subtle details are worth noting.
  • The release headline itself, "HP to Seek New Business Model for HP-branded Cameras" -- when was the last time "business models" were the focus of a $100 Billion company's press release? Takes one back to a typical announcement from the last, VC-fueled Internet bubble and a much smaller, newer company.
  • Open disclosure of seeking out an outside OEM to market products under the HP Brand -- this always seemed like the type of relationship that was carefully and quietly managed. Insiders know it goes on all the time, but why publicize it? Do consumers need or want to know their "HP" camera really is from another company?
  • Publicly trading off one investment for another -- Good for Print 2.0, the new focus for HP that will benefit from its de-emphasizing digital cameras, as documented in the release, but again, not the norm for a public announcement.
  • "HP makes cameras?" -- Of course many of us know the company's long history in the area, but with their low visibility in at least some segments of the camera market, there must have been at least a few readers that had this or a similar reaction.


Unknown said...

I hope your column here wasn't the reason HP's stock dropped by $4 since yesterday? :)

ng2000 said...

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