Position: President, chairman and CEO, HP
Location: Palo Alto, Calif.
In the three years since Mark Hurd took the reins as HP’s CEO, after the dismissal of his predecessor Carleton S. Fiorina, the notebook giant has become one of the top-ranking and top money-making technology companies in the world: HP’s revenues totaled over $107 billion in the last four fiscal quarters.
It should come as no surprise. As CEO and president of NCR, a midwestern company that manufactured retail scanning systems and ATMs, Hurd quickly earned a reputation as a miracle worker by turning around the lagging company (stocks increased by 300 percent from $9 per share) in just two years time. Hurd applied the same techniques during his tenure at HP that he used at NCR: slashing costs, reducing staff, and mandating pay cuts while focusing the company’s energies on sales.
Under Hurd, HP changed the game as the company became one of the first PC manufacturers to push stylish, eye-catching devices with its slick Imprint design—and the competition quickly followed suit, much to the delight of consumers worldwide. Hurd has also pushed HP to be the first name-brand PC maker to enter the surging low-cost mini-notebook market with its new Mini-Note (see full review on p. 80). And while it’s pricier than the compeition, it’s slicker design, full-size keyboard, and configurability options redefine the fledgling category.
Did You Know: Hurd played pro tennis briefly in 1980.