HP Still Eyeing Pricewaterhouse Consulting Unit

Hewlett-Packard is still in talks with Pricewaterhouse Coopers LLP over the possible acquisition of the accounting firm's consulting division, Carly Fiorina, HP's chairwoman, president and chief executive officer, said Wednesday.

"This potential acquisition is based on a belief that the days of talking to one company about business strategy and another company about technology are over," Fiorina said, speaking at a two-day electronic-business summit hosted here by Intel.

Fiorina described a new era of "services-based computing," in which consumers and employees will be able to access new types of networked services over the Internet from PCs, cell phones, handheld computers and other devices.

"We believe the best way to accelerate growth and to address this market shift (to Internet-based services) is through the acquisition of a premier consulting agency," she said.

HP confirmed last month that it was in talks with Pricewaterhouse over a possible acquisition. At the time, HP said it would pay as much as $US17 billion to $US18 billion in cash and stock for the consulting arm.

HP, based in Palo Alto, California, can be reached at http://www.hp.com/.

PricewaterhouseCoopers can be found on the Web at http://www.pwcglobal.com/.

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