Hewlett-Packard Shareholder Sues Over Failed Acquisitions

by Christopher Freeburn | November 27, 2012 1:03 pm

Hewlett Packard building Tunisia630 300x153 Hewlett Packard Shareholder Sues Over Failed Acquisitions[1]Hewlett-Packard (NYSE:HPQ[2]) is facing litigation from a man who says the 200 HP shares he purchased in May have lost $1,900 in value due to efforts by HP management to conceal the financial fallout of bad acquisitions[3].

In a lawsuit filed in a San Francisco federal court, Allen Nicolow accuses HP’s management of hiding losses resulting from the purchases of software-maker Autonomy and Electronic Data Systems in order to maintain the company’s share price, the Associated Press noted.

Last week, HP admitted that an internal probe had uncovered improper accounting practices[4] at U.K.-based Autonomy, which is acquired for $10 billion in 2011. The company has notified British and American regulators of its findings.

The problems at Autonomy emerged just months after HP conceded that its $13 billion acquisition of Electronic Data Systems in 2008 has led to significant losses. HP has taken $17 billion in accounting charges this year due to the combined losses from both purchases.

Nicolow is requesting unspecified damages and is seeking class action status. The lawsuit names current HP CEO Meg Whitman, along with her predecessor Leo Apotheker and various other HP executives.

HP shares have been battered both by the revelations and by declines in personal computer and accessories sales, driven by a shift toward smartphones and tablets like Apple‘s (NASDAQ:AAPL[5]) iPad and devices running Google‘s (NASDAQ:GOOG[6]) Android operating system.

HP shares fell more than 1% on Tuesday afternoon trading.

Endnotes:
  1. [Image]: http://investorplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/08/Hewlett_Packard_building_Tunisia630.jpg
  2. HPQ: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=HPQ
  3. conceal the financial fallout of bad acquisitions: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/11/26/allen-nicolow-hp_n_2194622.html
  4. uncovered improper accounting practices: http://investorplace.com/2012/11/hpq-and-bernanketake-market-down-tuesdays-ip-market-recap-hpq-kkd-gmcr-bby-v/
  5. AAPL: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=AAPL
  6. GOOG: http://studio-5.financialcontent.com/investplace/quote?Symbol=GOOG

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