HP appoints new head of software

Bill Veghte will be HP's new chief operating officer, while George Kadifa has been hired to head up software

Following through on promises to shuffle the ranks of upper management, Hewlett-Packard has hired George Kadifa to head up the company's software division and promoted Bill Veghte, who formerly led the division, to the role of chief operating officer.

Kadifa, who will become an executive vice president, will manage the company's IT Performance Suite software portfolio and report to Meg Whitman, HP president and CEO. Veghte will work with Whitman to shepherd projects key to the company's success.

Kadifa has worked in the IT business for over 30 years, concentrating on sales, business development, consulting management and general management.

Most recently, Kadifa worked at global technology investment firm Silver Lake, where he worked to improve operational efficiency of the 24 companies the firm invested in. Prior to Silver Lake, Kadifa held executive positions at both IBM and hosting provider Corio, which was purchased by IBM.

"George brings a wealth of experience gained at traditional software companies, service providers and startups," said Whitman, in a statement. "His ability to manage multiple business models will prove extremely valuable to HP as we extend our software offerings in cloud, information and security."

In addition to being the executive vice president of HP software, Veghte formerly worked as HP's chief strategy officer. Prior to working at HP, Veghte headed up the Windows division at Microsoft, overseeing the company's successful launch of Windows 7.

The last few weeks have been organizationally tumultuous for HP.

Veghte's appointment follows the departure last week of Mike Lynch, founder and CEO of Autonomy Software, which HP purchased last year for around $US11 billion.

Also last week, Whitman announced, during a quarterly earnings conference call, that HP would lay off 27,000 employees by 2014 in an effort to restructure the company, as well as make some changes in upper management. She reiterated her plan for software sales to play a more crucial role within the company.

Joab Jackson covers enterprise software and general technology breaking news for The IDG News Service. Follow Joab on Twitter at @Joab_Jackson. Joab's e-mail address is Joab_Jackson@idg.com

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