HPE Said to Be in Talks to Sell Its Software Unit

**Editor’s Note: Please click here for a recap of the biggest channel-impacting mergers in May-June 2016.**

Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) has long struggled with the software side of the house. That struggle may be coming to an end with the news that the vendor is in talks with buyout firm Thoma Bravo LLC to sell the software business unit.

Talks are in the works, according to a Reuters report, with hope of a sale to generate between $8 billion to $10 billion for the company that continues to reshape itself since separating from its printer and personal systems division, now HP Inc., last year.

Several years ago, then executive vice president and general manager of HP Software, George Kadifa, referred to the company’s software group as it’s “hidden jewel,” and at Hewlett Packard’s Global Partner Conference 2013, the company made a concerted effort to push more software business through its partner channel.

HP’s “hidden jewel” never did shine, with revenue hovering around $4 billion in 2012, 2013 and 2014 ($3.9 billion), and declining in 2015 to $3.6 billion.{ad}

Saying adieu to the software business unit would allow HPE chief executive Meg Whitman to hone current company business on networking, storage, data centers and technology services — as has been her goal.

What impact would the sale of the software business have on partners? Probably not much, as the company’s call for partners to rally around software opportunities fell largely on deaf ears.

Instead, HPE partners could deepen their alignment with the company’s strategic goals and commitments.

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