Hewlett-Packard VP Meaghan Kelly Shifts to New Role

Meaghan Kelly, one of the best-known executives driving Hewlett-Packard's small business initiatives, is taking on a new role within HP. Indeed, Kelly is joining HP's Office of the CTO to focus full-time on a startup/VC project. Kelly's new title: VP, Startup Central. The effort has clear implications for HP's channel partners. Here's why.

Kelly confirmed her new role in an email to The VAR Guy in recent days. (Yes, our resident blogger really has an email address.) Kelly wrote:

"I'll still be taking these great startup companies and driving them through our channel. As you know, we've had great success with Axcient and our engagement is in full swing on SMB Cloud."
Indeed, Kelly described her growing focus on the startup and VC markets back in April 2011. Her efforts triggered a close working relationship with Axcient, a cloud storage provider that now works with hundreds of HP channel partners. By May of 2011, Kelly described how she increasingly connected Silicon Valley's cloud startups to channel partners. See Talkin' Cloud FastChat Video:

Changing Times

Now, Kelly is focused full-time on that startup and VC initiative within HP. Her career move comes at a critical time for HP. The company has taken considerable heat for a range of recent business moves, including the potential sale or spin-off of HP's Personal Systems Group (PSG).

Amid the potential PC distraction, some HP's channel partners need consistent access to key HP executives. Moreover, those HP partners need to know exactly where HP is heading next as the IT giant seeks to work with more cloud computing companies and Silicon Valley start-ups. Translation: Kelly remains a key name to know for channel partners who are tracking HP's technology and business partnerships.
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