PwC announced plans to spin-off its consultancy operation in February following pressure from the US Securities and Exchange Commission to split its business to avoid conflicts of interest. HP emerged as the leading contender to buy the $17.5bn-rated operation.
But reports from America suggest HP shareholders are unhappy about the move and are directing their annoyance at chief executive Carly Fiorina who, up until last month, had won plaudits for revitalising HP.
‘I like her and she’s done a pretty good job, but this may be her Waterloo,’ one shareholder told newswire service Bloomberg. ‘If she does this [acquires PwC’s consulting arm], I think she’ll regret it.’
Analyst Brian Eisenbarth, of Collins & Co, a major HP shareholder, said: ‘Buying a consulting firm – I don’t know if that’s the best use of their resources at this point.
‘It would be a big project and it would take her a lot of time,’ he told Bloomberg.
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