HP Inc. has agreed to acquire Poly, the conferencing hardware, and headset company, for $40 a share, or $3.3 billion including debt. HP (ticker: HPQ) CEO Enrique Lores has been talking recently about the opportunity to expand the company’s peripherals business, and this deal takes a big step in that direction. Meanwhile, HP’s scale could help Poly fix recent supply-chain issues, while giving it access to a wider range of customers.
In an interview, HP CEO Enrique Lores said HP sees “tremendous opportunity” in the growth of hybrid work, with expanding markets for both video and audio conferencing gear and headsets used at home. That view puts him in sync with Poly CEO Dave Shull.
“The future of work is hybrid, which is to say for any given workforce, some percentage of folks will be remote, some percentage of the time, while the balance will be in the office,” Shull said on Poly’s most recent earnings call. “These percentages can and will shift but the simple truth is that, the future of work will almost always involve at least one person out of the meeting room, and one person in it.”
Poly was created from the $2 billion acquisition in 2018 of video and audioconferencing company Polycom by Plantronics , which specialized in office-based headsets. For HP (ticker: HPQ), buying Poly extends its recent push beyond personal computers and printers into the peripherals market. In February 2021, HP acquired the gaming peripherals business HyperX from Kingston Technology for $425 million in cash. HyperX specializes in gaming headsets for both PCs and console systems.
HP expects the deal to close by the end of calendar 2022, pending Poly shareholder approval, regulatory clearances, and other customary conditions. HP said the deal would be an immediate boost to non-GAAP profits. HP expects to cross-sell Poly products across its commercial and consumer sales channels, with incremental sales from combining Poly’s products with HP’s PC portfolio.