HP has bought five companies in the past 16 months:
But the company says it won't stop there. "We are looking to grow more in the software business," Hogan said, adding that quick growth "can't all be organic growth." Hogan was speaking at a press conference held at HP's Software Universe conference here Monday. He would not divulge any information on which companies he might be considering buying, and he would not confirm that the company was actively looking. All he would say was, "If we are looking for purchases, it will in the billions-of-dollars class."
The company is "committed to massively elevating the strategic relevance of HP software", Hogan said. "[Software is] the fastest-growing and most profitable line of business within HP... and from a margin basis, the most profitable." Two years ago, it was break-even, according to Hogan.
In July this year, HP spent another $1.6 billion on Opsware, a company that offers products and services for provisioning and configuring servers and network infrastructure.
Two years ago--prior to these purchases and under the stewardship of, who --HP's total software business was worth about $1 billion but was barely profitable. In the last quarter of 2005, it made just $27 million in profit from $311 million in revenue.
According to Hogan, HP has seen revenue double from the fourth quarter of last year to the fourth quarter of this year, which has now reached $698 million. For the full year, software revenue is $2.33 billion, but the level of profit is unclear. Hogan would only say that profit "is up 306 percent, year on year."
Colin Barker of ZDNet UK reported from Barcelona.