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When HP warned investors that it could sell some of its business units, the gossips immediately turned their eyes to Autonomy.But new evidence shows that HP is reorganising Autonomy, not trying to sell it.
The new head of Autonomy, Robert Youngjohns, promised to hire some 50 engineers for the Autonomy unit, according to a memo shared with AllThingsD’s Arik Hesseldahl.
HP is currently engaged in a plan to cut some 29,000 employees from its worldwide payroll. Those layoffs are falling most heavily on its enterprise-services arms.
Youngjohns also warned in his memo that layoffs were coming to Autonomy.
This sort of confirms previous reports that about 70 Autonomy employees would be cut, though these cuts were expected to be mostly in sales.
The memo says the ax will fall mostly on an Autonomy product called Aurasma. Aurasma is an augmented-reality app. Youngjohns wrote:
While a number of roles will remain largely unaffected by this, other roles within Aurasma will no longer be required going forward and some work force reduction is likely.
HP isn’t ditching the app. It plans to use it to “link print back to the Internet” and to come up with more smartphone apps like HP Live Photo for iPhones, the memo says. Live Photo lets you turn a photo into an augmented-reality experience.
Cuts in any form at Autonomy aren’t surprising.
HP is currently in a very public and very messy squabble over Autonomy. It has accused Autonomy’s previous executives of improper accounting, allegations that founder Mike Lynch denies. HP said the alleged deceptions accounted for most of an $8.8 billion writedown the company took in November. That disclosure has led to an investigation by the Department of Justice and at least 10 shareholder lawsuits.
Plus it has kept HP and its board in a tornado of drama.
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