HP posts $8.9bn Q3 loss despite profit rise at print group

A good portion of that red ink was caused by a huge write-down linked to HP’s nearly $14 billion purchase of Electronic Data Systems.

HP said the PC market continues to be soft as it reported a 5% decline in quarterly net revenue to $29.7 billion.

“HP is still in the early stages of a multi-year turnaround, and we’re making decent progress despite the headwinds,” said president Meg Whitman.

“During the quarter we took important steps to focus on strategic priorities, manage costs, drive needed organisational change, and improve the balance sheet. We continue to deliver on what we say we will do.”

HP reported its Imaging and Printing Group (IPG) saw a 3% year-on-year decline in revenue to $6 billion. IPG operating profit was up 1.6% to 15.8% of revenue and $949 million in profits.

Total printer unit shipments fell by 17%, but all of that was driven by a decline in consumer printers. Commercial printer revenue and hardware units were both up 4%.

“In IPG, we saw solid margin improvement in the third quarter,” Whitman told analysts during a conference call.

“Ink Advantage, our innovative business model targeting affordable printing in emerging markets, made significant progress. We greatly expanded the number of countries we now cover with this program.”

She added: “Our focus on the high end of the hardware market continues to show positive results with strong share gains. We also launched HP ePrint Enterprise 2.0.

“This amazing technology enables enterprises to easily connect every employee’s mobile device to an existing fleet of network printers via HP’s cloud printing solution.”

Whitman also cited the sale of 10 HP Indigo 10000 digital presses to Consolidated Graphics as among the highlights of the quarter, and added, “The integration of PSG and IPG is well under way. We are reducing overlap and driving cost reductions between the two businesses while at the same time taking advantage of their combined scale.”

The manufacturer has undertaken a global restructure that involves cutting 8% of its workforce, equal to 27,000 jobs, by October 2014. More than 11,000 of these are expected to have left by the end of its financial year this October.

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This article originally appeared at printweek.com

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