Carly Fiorina is an American businesswoman, former CEO of technology giant Hewlett-Packard Co. (HPQ), and a Republican politician with aspirations to the presidency. She and her husband, former executive Frank Fiorina, have an estimated net worth of $59 million as of 2015.
Fiorina began her career in 1980 at AT&T Inc. (T), and received steady promotions within the company, and later at Lucent Technologies after the telecommunications behemoth spun it off in 1996. Her time as an upper-level executive at Lucent led her to the post of CEO Hewlett-Packard, which she held from 1999 through 2005, pivotal years of development for the Internet and for personal computing as a whole. At the time, Fiorina made headlines as the first woman chief executive of a company ranked in the top 20 by Fortune magazine.
During her tenure, HP grew substantially during a difficult time for tech companies. Its growth was largely due to its 2002 merger with PC competitor Compaq. Fiorina led the deal, which was the biggest technology merger in history at that point. The acquisition made HP the world's biggest PC manufacturer, doubling its revenue and increasing its already vast catalog of patents.
But HP’s acquisition of Compaq wasn’t a victory for everyone. During and after the merger, Fiorina oversaw the elimination of a staggering 30,000 U.S. employees as part of the reorganization. The deal also didn’t deliver what it promised to HP shareholders, who complained about the company’s sinking stock value and steadily disappointing earnings.
The HP board wanted Fiorina to make some changes, specifically it asked her to hand over more of her authority to division heads within the company. She refused, and in early 2005, the board demanded that she step down.
Since leaving HP, Fiorina has remained in the public eye, with her political aspirations clearly on view. After advising Republican John McCain on his failed 2008 presidential bid, she tried her hand in the arena, running for the United States Senate in California in 2010. Although she won the Republican nomination in a hotly contested primary, she lost the general election to incumbent Democratic Barbara Boxer. (For more, see: Trump, Fiorina, et al.: Should CEOs Be President?)
In 2015, Fiorina took the next step by announcing that she would seek the presidency as a Republican candidate for the 2016 election. She ended her bid for the nomination in February 2016.
Carly Fiorina: Early Life and Education
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