Robert Cyran, U.S. tech columnist, joined Breakingviews in London in 2003 and moved four years later to New York, where he continues to cover global technology, pharmaceuticals and special situations. Robert began his career at Forbes magazine, where he assisted in the startup of the international version of the magazine. Before working at Breakingviews he worked as a market researcher and reporter covering the pharmaceutical industry. Robert has a Masters degree in economics from Birmingham University and an undergraduate degree from George Washington University. Follow Rob on Twitter @rob_cyran
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CEO Meg Whitman originally thought separating the company’s PC arm would incur $1 bln a year in extra costs. The figure is now down to about $425 mln. That should help the split narrow the $61 bln HP’s stubborn conglomerate discount, even if it won’t create a glowing new future.
The drugstore giant’s $10 bln purchase of the pharma services firm gives it entrance to nursing homes and expands specialty medicine distribution. But the increasingly concentrated industry is already raising antitrust concerns. The era of frantic mergers may be nearing an end.
The IT services firm’s shrinking market and already tight cost controls made it an improbable buyout candidate. Declaring a chunky special dividend and separating out its gem – the arm that does U.S. government business – is the next-best way to keep investors happy.
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