Official Release: HP Completes Palm Acquisition

Now it’s official.

PALO ALTO, Calif., — HP today announced it has completed its acquisition of Palm Inc. at a price of $5.70 per share of Palm common stock in cash.

HP today announced it has completed its acquisition of Palm Inc. at a price of $5.70 per share of Palm common stock in cash.

The combination gives HP significant headway into one of technology’s fastest-growth segments with Palm’s innovative webOS platform and family of smartphones, plus a rich portfolio of intellectual property from the smartphone pioneer.

HP’s global scale and financial strength plus Palm’s award-winning webOS experience, as well as its acclaimed Pre and Pixi smartphone product lines, enhance HP’s ability to participate more aggressively in the highly profitable, $100 billion smartphone and connected mobile device markets.

“With webOS, HP will deliver its customers a unique and compelling experience across smartphones and other mobility products,” said Todd Bradley, executive vice president, Personal Systems Group, HP. “This allows us the opportunity to fully engage in growing our smartphone family offering and the footprint of webOS.”

Under Jon Rubinstein, former Palm chairman and chief executive officer, the Palm global business unit will report to Bradley. Palm will be responsible for webOS software development and webOS based hardware products, from a robust smartphone roadmap to future slate PCs and netbooks.

“With HP’s full backing and global strengths, I’m confident that webOS will be able to reach its full potential,” said Rubinstein. ”This agreement will accelerate the development of this incredible platform with new resources, scale and support from a world-respected brand.”

Palm Now Part of HP

With the shareholder approval behind them, Palm has officially become part of HP. Several Palm employees and former employees were twittering heavily last night that it was the end of Palm. These tweets were of the celebratory nature. The end of Palm as we know it is a new beginning, one that will be under HP.  Palm products already prominently featured on HP’s website. A quick search of Palm Pre turned up HP Wireless Central. There are so many interesting subplots to this acquisition. Will the Palm brand survive? Will we see new HP/Palm hardware this year? Will HP commit the resources to take on Apple and Google? For today, let’s put those to rest and celebrate Palm, a company that has enriched so many of our lives with their mobile devices.

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Remember your first Palm device? Share it with us in the comments.

HP Issues Statement on Plans for webOS

Yesterday brought a few quotes from HP’s CEO Mark Hurd that sent the webOS community into a state of panic and concern over HP’s commitment to smartphones. The killer quote, “We didn’t buy Palm to be in the smartphone business“,  made headlines throughout the blogosphere. Today we get clarification in the form of an official statement (via Engadget) from HP that should have webOS enthusiasts feeling a bit more enthusiastic about the future of webOS as it relates to smartphones.

When we look at the market, we see an array of interconnected devices, including tablets, printers, and of course, smartphones. We believe webOS can become the backbone for many of HP’s small form factor devices, and we expect to expand webOS’s footprint beyond just the smartphone market, all while leveraging our financial strength, scale, and global reach to grow in smartphones.

Evaluating the impact of the HP Palm deal on webOS

When the deal announced yesterday is finalized, Palm will be a subsidiary of HP. If you listened to executives from HP yesterday, the company plans on “doubling-down” on webOS. The day after the big acquisition, we ask the question, “how does this affect current webOS users?”

The biggest positive coming from yesterday’s news will be the financial muscle of HP will now be driving the webOS ecosystem. If HP is serious about “doubling down” and we have no reason not believe them, they will invest heavily in development. That should translate to more developers on staff coupled with more research. For webOS to grow, HP will likely take advantage of the key players, absent Mike Abbott who left for Twitter. HP was clearly pleased with webOS, so perhaps they will simply invest and accelerate the current road map for software development. Translation: webOS users should see more updates and a more aggressive release schedule.

Continue Reading …

BREAKING: HP Buying Palm

HP (Hewlett Packard) is purchasing Palm for 1.2 billion dollars. This as official as it gets, complete with press release below.

PALO ALTO, Calif. & SUNNYVALE, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–HP (NYSE: HPQ – News) and Palm, Inc. (NASDAQ: PALM – News) today announced that they have entered into a definitive agreement under which HP will purchase Palm, a provider of smartphones powered by the Palm webOS mobile operating system, at a price of $5.70 per share of Palm common stock in cash or an enterprise value of approximately $1.2 billion. The transaction has been approved by the HP and Palm boards of directors.

The combination of HP’s global scale and financial strength with Palm’s unparalleled webOS platform will enhance HP’s ability to participate more aggressively in the fast-growing, highly profitable smartphone and connected mobile device markets. Palm’s unique webOS will allow HP to take advantage of features such as true multitasking and always up-to-date information sharing across applications.

“Palm’s innovative operating system provides an ideal platform to expand HP’s mobility strategy and create a unique HP experience spanning multiple mobile connected devices,” said Todd Bradley, executive vice president, Personal Systems Group, HP. “And, Palm possesses significant IP assets and has a highly skilled team. The smartphone market is large, profitable and rapidly growing, and companies that can provide an integrated device and experience command a higher share. Advances in mobility are offering significant opportunities, and HP intends to be a leader in this market.”

“We’re thrilled by HP’s vote of confidence in Palm’s technological leadership, which delivered Palm webOS and iconic products such as the Palm Pre. HP’s longstanding culture of innovation, scale and global operating resources make it the perfect partner to rapidly accelerate the growth of webOS,” said Jon Rubinstein, chairman and chief executive officer, Palm. “We look forward to working with HP to continue to deliver industry-leading mobile experiences to our customers and business partners.”

Under the terms of the merger agreement, Palm stockholders will receive $5.70 in cash for each share of Palm common stock that they hold at the closing of the merger. The merger consideration takes into account the updated guidance and other financial information being released by Palm this afternoon. The acquisition is subject to customary closing conditions, including the receipt of domestic and foreign regulatory approvals and the approval of Palm’s stockholders. The transaction is expected to close during HP’s third fiscal quarter ending July 31, 2010.

Palm’s current chairman and CEO, Jon Rubinstein, is expected to remain with the company.