HP has announced expansion to their Board by adding three new directors, with the most notable being Ray Ozzie, Microsoft's former chief software architect. In addition to Ozzie, HP has added Jim Skinner, former CEO of McDonald's and current chairman of Walgreen Co., and Dob Bennett, prior CEO for Liberty Media, Corp. The expansion increases HP's board numbers from nine to 12.
HP is no stranger to reorganizations and executive shuffling. This is the third overhaul of HP's board since 2011, and a continuing reorganization and direction stabilization, predicated, in part, when Ray Lane left the chairmanship. During Ray's tenure HP saw a $8.8 billion write down of software company Autonomy, the death of the TouchPad tablet, a spin-off of HP's PC division. Ray also hand-selected Meg Whitman (CEO of eBay) to lead HP. Prior to Ray Lane, Mark Hurd was ousted as CEO due to a sex and expense report scandal.
Just a quick glance at the board members that have been added, only Ray Ozzie seems to make the most sense. HP has always been known as a hardware manufacturer, and like similar companies (example: Dell), software is seen as the key way to expand in a market that is digging its heels into Cloud services. However, if you dig a bit deeper and combine the experience of the board members, it's possible that HP is considering moving into Cloud media services by bringing Dob Bennett on board.
The McDonald's/Walgreen connection, though, is still unclear to me. However, maybe this is the beginning of a completely new market offering where you can watch TV in the Cloud, while eating fries and buying toilet paper.