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HP revenues grow with 21% increase in laptop sales

PC giant defies financial gloom

Strong laptop sales helped HP report a 19 percent jump in revenue for its most recent quarter, which end in October quarter, while the company's result were also lifted by its acquisition of EDS.

The company's printer and desktop PC businesses fared less well, however, and results from HP's enterprise hardware business were mixed.

Chairman and CEO Mark Hurd was upbeat about the results, saying HP's geographic reach and wide product portfolio are helping to shield it against the effects of the tough economy. But like his peers at other big tech companies, Hurd was cautious about the future.

"We think it will be a challenging environment and we're planning as such," he told reporters during a conference call to discuss the results.

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Revenue for HP's fourth fiscal quarter, which ended on October 31, was $33.6bn, up 19 percent from a year earlier, or up 5 percent excluding the effect of the EDS acquisition. Net profit was $2.1bn, down from $2.2bn in the same quarter last year. Excluding one-time charges, net profit climbed 13 percent to $2.6 billion.

Revenue from HP's Personal Systems Group climbed 10 percent to $11.2bn, with unit shipments up 19 percent. A 21 percent jump in laptop sales offset a 2 percent decline in HP's desktop PC business.

Revenue from its Imaging and Printing group declined 1 percent to $7.5bn. Sales of printer ink and other supplies climbed 9 percent, but sales of actual printer hardware declined by 21 percent in the consumer market and 10 percent to businesses.

The Enterprise Storage and Servers division also reported a slight dip in revenue, falling 1 percent to $5.1bn. HP's storage gear and blade servers sold well, but revenue from industry-standard and high-end servers declined, HP said.

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