Details Emerge on Steve Jobs’ Fight to Save HP

BusinessWeek is exploring the past and the future of HP in a new report detailing how the company’s tumultuous tailspin originated in recent years.

Sharing information that hadn’t previously come to light, BusinessWeek learned that late Apple chief Steve Jobs was willing to stick out his own neck to help dumped HP boss Mark Hurd regain his position at HP.

Having been forced to resign by HP’s board in 2010, Hurd faced claims that he committed sexual harassment at work. They were claims that Hurd denied. But the board still wanted him gone and many suspected that it was for reasons removed from the accusations.

Oracle CEO Larry Ellison called Hurd’s removal from HP “the worst personnel decision since the idiots on the Apple board fired Steve Jobs many years ago.”

Interestingly enough, it was Jobs who would reach out to Hurd after his HP dismissal. Jobs “wanted to know if Hurd needed someone to talk to.” After the two met at Jobs’ Palo Alto, California home, the late Apple executive encouraged Hurd to make things right with the HP board.

“Jobs even offered to write a letter to HP’s directors and to call them up one by one,” the report reads.

By offering Hurd counsel, Jobs wasn’t merely lending a friend psychological support. Rather, he was going to bat for the legacy of Bill Hewlett and Dave Packard. A healthy HP, Jobs urged, was essential to a healthy Silicon Valley.

To read the lengthy but eye-opening new report from BusinessWeek, click here.