Hewlett Packard Enterprise Co said on Tuesday that Meg Whitman was stepping down as chief executive officer, sending its shares down 7.4 percent in trading after the bell. Whitman engineered the biggest breakup in corporate history during her 6 year tenure at the helm, creating HPE and PC-and-printer business HP Inc from parent Hewlett Packard Co in 2015. Whitman will be succeeded by the company’s president, Antonio Neri, who takes over from Feb. 1. “Now is the right time for Antonio and a new generation of leaders to take the reins of HPE,” Whitman said in a statement. Whitman, who will continue as a board member, had been steering the company towards areas such as networking, storage and technology services.
In September, HPE spun-off its enterprise software businesses to British software company MicroFocus International Plc in an effort to beef up its cloud services for corporate computing. HPE reported net income of $524 million, or 32 cents per share, for the fourth quarter ended Oct. 31, compared with $302 million, or 18 cents per share, a year earlier. Revenue rose to $7.66 billion from $7.32 billion.