Yesterday’s mega-merger of two of the world’ largest computer hardware manufacturers, Hewlett-Packard and Compaq Computer [WAMN: 04-Sep-01], left the usual marketing questionmarks hanging over the deal.

But in an unusually early comment on marketing policy, HP ceo Carly Fiorina made it crystal clear that HP is in the driving seat and that its name will be the “surviving brand”. She added, however, that the enlarged company will deploy the “sub-brands of Compaq smartly”.

Although side-stepping specific issues such as marketing structure or interregnum plans, Fiorina admitted that marketing is seen as an area for potential cost-saving. But HP did not think it would be spending less, she said. “We have to position the combination effectively. We will be spending at least as much as the two companies spent individually.”

According to New York media monitoring specialist CMR, HP last year spent $160 million in measured media in the US alone, and $55.5m in the first five months of 2001. During the same periods, Compaq adspend was $149m and $50m.

News source: Advertising Age - Daily Deadline