HP walks away from Violin lessons

The maker of expensive printer ink, HP, plans to end its agreement selling solid-state storage devices made by Violin Memory.

The move is making a mess of Violin Memory’s plan for an initial public offering.

Violin Memory was one of the a number of companies selling high-performance solid-state drives which are targeted for storage machines from 3PAR, which HP agreed to buy in 2010 for $2.4 billion.

This is raising questions about what HP is planning for its 3PAR purchases.

HP spokesperson Michael Thacker told Reuters that HP 3PAR is HP’s strategic platform for solid-state storage. However, some have been wondering if that is like a UK politician quitting to spend more time with his family.

The move must have been a shock for Violin Memory which had been doing well on the back of the HP deal and had been planning a stock listing for over a year.

Suzanne Chan, a spokesperson for Violin, wrote in an e-mailed statement to Bloomberg that the relationship between the two companies was unchanged. She said that the same products continue to be available to customers via HP as when they both entered into the relationship. Joint selling also continues, she insisted.