Investor Sues HP Over Autonomy's Alleged Fraud
Unit's founder says he's 'shocked' by allegations
By Kevin Spak, Newser User
Posted Nov 27, 2012 1:36 PM CST
Hewlett-Packard headquarters in Palo Alto, Calif.   (AP Photo/Paul Sakuma,File)

(Newser) – As if losing $8.8 billion thanks to alleged accounting malfeasance at its newly acquired Autonomy Corp unit wasn't bad enough, Hewlett-Packard is now facing a lawsuit from an investor over the deal. The shareholder claims HP hid Autonomy's problems, issuing false and misleading statements, Bloomberg reports. "At the time Hewlett-Packard agreed in principle to acquire Autonomy, defendants were looking to unwind the deal in light of accounting regularities," the suit alleges. It also accuses HP of hiding negative portents for its enterprise services business.

There were lots of red flags HP could have spotted before buying Autonomy, the Wall Street Journal reports. The company appears, for example, to have "sold" goods to companies by buying their customers' products in return, listing the expense in an oft-ignored corner of its balance sheet. But Autonomy founder Mike Lynch says the allegations are false, telling the New York Times it was "a bit of a shock" when HP leveled them. He says Autonomy's sales plummeted because of HP's mismanagement. "They drove out the top 100 people from Autonomy," he says. "HP salesmen got better commissions for selling our competitors' products."

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Nov 27, 2012 3:06 PM CST
Typical whining investor. Gambled and lost...and too arrogant to admit they were too stupid to do all the research involved with investing. Poor baby has a problem. So sue the company or person who recommended or placed the buy for not properly researching...or admit stupidity if bought solo and deal with the loss. It's like playing the slot machine and crying for your money back when you lose it. But wait...there's a solution...let's get rid of all those overseeing government agencies and pesky laws that would force companies like HP or Autonomy Corp to disclose everything...or keep things kinda honest so investors have something concrete to work with. Or at least let's get rid of the taxes that'll pay for those intruding government agencies. And while we're at it, let's get rid of the agencies involved that keep casino owners from rigging the slots.