Hewlett-Packard to Buy 3Com

The $2.7 billion purchase will bring 'disruptive change' to the networking industry, says HP.

Computer giant Hewlett-Packard announced on Wednesday that it has agreed to buy networking company 3Com for $2.7 billion.

The Palo Alto, Calif.-based computer colossus said the 3Com purchase advances a strategy to offer businesses datacenter packages that combine servers, storage, networking, management and services.

"By acquiring 3Com, we are accelerating the execution of our Converged Infrastructure strategy and bringing disruptive change to the networking industry," said HP general manager of enterprise servers and networking Dave Donatelli.

The takeover offer has been approved by HP and 3Com boards of directors.

Under the terms of the deal, 3Com stockholders will get $7.9 per share of common stock.

The acquisition is expected to close in the first half of next year providing it passes muster with regulators.

3Com has grown into a $1.3 billion global corporation specializing in enterprise computer networking since it was founded in Massachusetts in 1979. 3Com brands include H3C in China and the TippingPoint computer security business.

"Our extensive product line and innovative technology together with HP's breadth and scale will expand our global opportunity," said 3Com CEO Bob Mao.

HP expects the 3Com acquisition to expand its Ethernet and routing offerings and significantly strengthen the California-based company's position in the fast-growing China market.

"We are confident that we can run our entire global business of 300,000-plus employees, including our next-generation data centers, entirely on the new HP networking solutions," said HP chief information officer Randy Mott.

"Based on our experience and extensive testing of 3Com's products, we are planning to undertake a global rollout within HP as soon as possible after the completion of the acquisition."

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2009

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