Ruh-roh: HP to take $8B charge

The massive charge is related to HP’s enterprise services arm constructed around its $14 billion purchase of Electronic Data Systems (EDS) in 2008. The company will announce its third quarter earnings on August 22.

More cloud computing M&A ahead

The wave of M&A activity swelling the cloud services sector won’t stop with in the software-as-a-service (SaaS) arena. Internap’s $30 million purchase of Voxel, announced early this week, signals a land rush for cloud services, with many smaller, capable cloud providers now in play.

If the Data Center Is the Computer the Fight Is on to Control the Ecosystem

Server room and devicesLiquid Computing, a startup going head-to-head with giants, today launched its own version of unified computing gear that stands in almost direct contrast to the announcements made yesterday by Cisco, EMC and VMware about Vblocks and the new Acadia services arm. Also today, HP laid out its vision and new software for a converged computing infrastructure, the heir to its adaptive infrastructure products of the last four years. These two announcements are the latest in a web of partnerships that are taking place in the data center infrastructure space as folks try to combine computer, storage and networking into some kind of monolithic compute fabric (GigaOM Pro subscription required). The end result of such efforts will be to make the data center function like a giant computer, and the fight is on to provide the component parts plus the OS. Read More about If the Data Center Is the Computer the Fight Is on to Control the Ecosystem

HP Completes EDS Buy, Heads for the Clouds

HP said today it has closed its $13.9 billion acquisition of Plano, Texas-based IT services provider EDS, which was first announced in May. The success of the deal will depend on HP’s ability to integrate such a large buy into its already mammoth corporate structure. HP has tackled such a large integration before, via its $18.6 billion merger with Compaq in 2002, but many would argue that that deal was a blundering mess rather than a streamlined corporate integration success story.

Now that the EDS deal is closed, HP can start to work out its nascent cloud strategy. As Om opined earlier, with EDS, HP gets a mature service provider, which means it could offer computing clouds backed by a team experienced with delivering remote services (I’m not saying hosted computing requires the same skill set as cloud computing, but it’s closer). Both HP and IBM have announced cloud computing initiatives in recent months; HP has even created an entire business unit called the Scalability Computing Initiative to sell both cloud hardware and services.

And if the cloud idea doesn’t work out, there’s plenty of business process outsourcing and other consulting firm jargon inside EDS to help HP compete with IBM on the services side. One thing is for sure: Dell now looks like less of a competitor to these guys than ever.

Networking: How to Work a Twitter Party

Networking has always been a high art in business. Just ask Susan Roane, my mentor and author of the seminal tome, “How to Work a Room.” (I know a handful of VCs and startup kings on Sand Hill Road who have her book tucked into a drawer.) I’ve been showcasing Roane’s lessons for founders in my Found|READ series, “What They Don’t Teach You At Stanford Business School.”

By now it’s time to address the latest, and arguably the most powerful, networking tool in any founders’ arsenal: Twitter. It’s simple. If you’re not “tweeting,” you’re missing half the conversation. Just ask Sarah Lacy. (How different Lacy’s now-infamous SXSW interview of Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg might have been had she been plugged into the tweets flying around the conference room floor!) Don’t know how to use Twitter? No sweat. Here are my 8 Tips for How to Work a Twitter Party.
(Photo credit: SXSW Tweeters celebrating before the ill-fated Zuckerberg interview.) Read More about Networking: How to Work a Twitter Party