HP's Fierce Face-Off

Despite a brutal boardroom battle, Carly Fiorina is closing in on her Compaq bid

It is hard to remember, standing in Enron's long shadow, that a company in a growth crisis can be as fascinating as one that's just plain in crisis. But Hewlett-Packard is doing its best to remind us. The personalities driving HP's long-running and very public merger debate are larger than life, and the whole of Silicon Valley is riveted by the story. Which, if you haven't been paying attention, goes like this: CEO Carly Fiorina wants a $25 billion marriage with Compaq--the largest tech merger ever--to avoid being squeezed between Dell (the personal-computer giant) and IBM (a leader in tech services...

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