With the HP-Compaq merger behind them, the new HP has emerged more focused and aggressive as they sell off what’s apparently not working in favor of what’s working: BEA? If this is the case, look out IBM and Sun.
Why acquire BEA? Well, BEA has the market share leading middleware and, perhaps, the IDE (WebLogic Workshop (Cajun)) and other software that HP covets in order to boost its HP-UX server sales and be on a more even hardware-middleware-software footing with IBM and Sun. The only thing BEA may be lacking is a database solution. However, BEA or HP with BEA could acquire a company like Sybase to solve this problem. As far as adopting .NET, this remains a possibility as well.
Speculation is becoming more and more noisy regarding HP and BEA, regardless of whether or not HP and BEA have actually talked, yet. The real question: does HP have the cash it will need to acquire BEA in this current equity market? Perhaps, given its combined financial prowess thanks to its merger (acquision of) with Compaq. Time will tell.
In the meantime, look for strong partnerships with BEA, along with, perhaps, Microsoft to develop and continue.
What do you think of this possibility?