Businesses have to do what they have to do. They are not in business to lose money, are they?
In 2001, as the dot-com bubble burst, she masterminded one of the largest tech mergers in history -- HP's $19 billion purchase of Compaq Computer Corp. An eight-month battle royal ensued as the families of the company's founders and many HP employees turned against her. She won a proxy vote by a sliver in 2002, and began the enormous task of integrating the two companies.
Less than three years later, she was abruptly fired, a blow cushioned by compensation worth about $42 million. Her ability to execute her vision was found lacking by the very board of directors that had supported her through the difficult merger fight.
"The stock took a beating, but she was absolutely correct," said venture capitalist Tom Perkins, a supporter despite having been a member of the HP board that fired her. "The merger was a brilliant move. Look where HP is now: the biggest computer company in the world."
· 9 years ago