HP Rumored to be Closing VoodooPC

Posted on September 22, 2008 4:00 PM by Rob Williams

According to an insider close to the situation, VoodooPC as we know it might not be around for much longer. An e-mail is apparently being circulated throughout the company noting layoffs, although the number of people to be culled is unclear. However, VoodooPC itself wouldn’t have that many employees to begin with, so any layoffs could be a sign of what’s to come.

In addition, it’s become known that VoodooPC has been returning product to their suppliers, such as Topower, their provider of power supplies. Topower has received over 300 of their supplies back, which doesn’t seem like much in the grand scheme, but Voodoo is known to sell less than 100 of their Omen desktop machines per month, and that’s the only product where a full power supply would be used.

This rumor comes at an ironic time, as the two-year anniversary of HP’s buying of VoodooPC comes on Sept. 28th. Since that time, fellow canuck and VoodooPC founder Rahul Sood has become an integral part of HP’s gaming and luxury operations, resulting in such products as the Blackbird 002.

The closing of such a well known boutique would undoubtedly be surprising, but it’s become obvious in the past two years that HP has far greater interest in promoting their own products, and with the help of Rahul and his crew, they can further develop their own brand rather than focus on their newly-acquired one. As it stands, VoodooPC offers two different models, the Omen desktop and Envy notebook, and neither deliver sales numbers that HP is looking for. The name might be well-known, but if it isn’t generating pleased investors, then keeping it around would be questionable.

Whether or not HP has offered a sell-back to Rahul is unknown, but it’s doubtful. Rahul built up a well-known boutique that offered incredible products, so it’s unlikely that HP would want to part with him just yet. For now, this is still a rumor, and neither HP nor HP have responded to our queries. We’ll update you once we know more.

Update: We didn’t receive responses from HP or Voodoo ourselves, but our friends at Gizmodo did, and Rahul had this to say: “HP is working on a plan to better leverage its existing resources to bring Voodoo products to market faster and make them more accessible to consumers. I can assure you that Voodoo employees and champions of the brand will continue to work on the conceptualization, design and development of Voodoo products.

C|Net’s Crave blog also received a response from an HP spokeswoman, “We continually assess and rebalance the size of our work force relative to the business environment and market conditions.

These quotes confirm that changes will be happening, but neither go into enough detail to let us know whether Voodoo as a company will still be standing in a few months, or if it will become a brand of HP instead. We’re sure to find out soon enough, and we’ll keep you up to date as soon as we find out more.

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