The largest acquisitions by the two former CEOs were Compaq by Fiorina in 2002 and EDS under Hurd's watch in 2008.
HP's EDS unit has faced problems that can be traced to having four different leaders in as many years, she said. The CEO disruptions resulted in changes in strategy and a reliance on short-term fixes that did not help the company, Whitman said.
She also noted that HP has too many products. In printing division alone, she noted, there are some 2,100 laser printers. She expects that number to be cut by nearly 50% over the next year.
"In every business were going to benefit from focusing on a smaller number of offerings that we can invest in and really make matter."
Sign up for Computerworld eNewsletters.