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HP Announces World
New Business Strategy to Broaden Developing Countries' Access to Social and Economic Opportunities of the Digital Age
PALO ALTO, Calif., Oct. 12, 2000
Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE: HWP) today announced World e-Inclusion, a new strategy to broaden access to the social and economic opportunities of the digital age.
The new strategy extends HP's business focus to traditionally excluded markets, with an emphasis on sustainable business ventures that improve the livelihoods of the roughly 4 billion people who have low incomes in Africa, Asia, Central and Eastern Europe, and Latin America.
In 2001, HP plans to target U.S. $1 billion of HP and partner products and services to be sold, leased or donated through special programs. The plan also includes enlisting the help of 1 million partners for the program, which expects to provide benefits to 1,000 villages.
"The Internet and related information technologies hold the promise of rapid, sustainable economic growth that directly benefits everyone on the planet. However, the same forces could also exacerbate social and economic disparities. How much of each the world will see depends to some degree on how companies like HP approach sustainability and the deployment of technology across markets, cultures and continents," said Carly Fiorina, HP chairman, president and chief executive officer.
World e-Inclusion goals in its first year are to:
Target U.S. $1 billion of HP and partner products and services to be sold, leased or donated through World e-Inclusion programs, including a special HP Garage venture fund, special sales and solution bundles that apply more broadly to HP's customers in the developing world, and discounts or donations to qualified organizations.
Enlist 1 million partners by establishing several major alliances with global partners, regional and function-specific organizations, and local project and service-delivery teams, and individuals through the Web who are actively involved in e-inclusion programs.
Touch 1,000 villages through "on-the-ground" initiatives that provide measurable social and economic benefits to people around the world, representing at least 1,000 rural communities.
HP is inventing and integrating the necessary technology, products, and e-services to deliver relevant solutions to benefit the poor in the developing world. Solutions focus on: health, education, information-based jobs, access to markets, and access to microcredit and other financial services.
"What differentiates HP's approach to bridging the digital divide is that we're focused on people, not technology. We are working with a broad range of local and global partners who share our vision and values to provide solutions that are economically sustainable, culturally sensitive, and environmentally friendly," said Debra Dunn, vice president, HP Strategy and Corporate Operations.
HP is already forging alliances around the world as part of its e-inclusion efforts. For example, earlier this year HP entered into an agreement with the Foundation for Sustainable Development of Costa Rica - led by former President Jose Maria Figueres Olsen - to develop and implement telecenters for villages in remote areas of the world.
Housed in recycled shipping containers, these telecenters, called LINCOS (Little Intelligent Communities), are equipped with solar-powered computers and high-speed Internet connections. Target applications include telemedicine, education, agriculture, micro-banking, access to world markets, environmental monitoring, and communications. The LINCOS program will spread from today's pilot sites in Central America and the Caribbean to Asia, Africa and Central Europe.
HP is also pursuing a similar project with Professor Muhammad Yunus' Grameen Bank to develop village telecenters - this time in Bangladesh - with an initial focus on reducing infant mortality and developing efficient transfer of funds, especially for individuals and small businesses.
To guide the new strategy, HP is also forming an advisory board of respected experts in technology, public policy, and sustainable development. Policy advisors include: Joel Birnbaum, chief scientist, HP ; James Moore, chairman of the policy board and GeoPartners Research; Barry Bloom, dean of the Harvard School of Public Health; Luong Ung, a Cambodian activist; and Sam Pitroda, Chairman of Worldtel.
Hewlett-Packard Company -- a leading global provider of computing and imaging solutions and services -- is focused on making technology and its benefits accessible to individuals and businesses through simple appliances, useful e-services and an Internet infrastructure that's always on.
HP has 86,000 employees worldwide and had total revenue from continuing operations of $42.4 billion in its 1999 fiscal year. Information about HP and its products can be found on the World Wide Web at http://www.hp.com/.
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