Former Autonomy Managers Say U.S. Air Force Won’t Debar Them

Jan 09, 2014 4:27 am ET

(Updates with German trading in sixth paragraph.)

Jan. 9 (Bloomberg) -- Former Autonomy Corp. executives were told by the U.S. Air Force it doesn’t plan to block them from doing business with the U.S. government, said a spokesman for Michael Lynch, who headed the software maker bought by Hewlett- Packard Co.

“The U.S. Air Force has informed former members of the Autonomy management team that, following our response to their request for further information, there is no plan to debar them in the foreseeable future,” a spokesman for Lynch said in an e- mailed statement.

Technology news site Re/code reported the news earlier, citing unidentified people and a spokesman for Lynch. Air Force spokesman Charles Gulick didn’t immediately respond to an e-mail sent outside of regular office hours.

Hewlett-Packard and Chief Executive Officer Meg Whitman last year lost a bid to dismiss a shareholder securities fraud lawsuit alleging investors were misled about the purchase of Autonomy. The software maker founded by Lynch was acquired for $10.3 billion in 2011.

The lawsuit was filed following the computer maker’s disclosure in November 2012 that it would take a $8.8 billion writedown on the value of Autonomy. Hewlett-Packard, based in Palo Alto, California, said it was the victim of fraud because Autonomy overstated its revenue growth and prospects.

Hewlett-Packard declined 1.5 percent to the equivalent of $27.47 in German trading at 10:18 a.m. Frankfurt time. It dropped 2.6 percent to close at $27.45 in New York yesterday. The stock almost doubled in value last year, beating the 30 percent gain of the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index.

--With assistance from Tony Capaccio in Washington. Editors: Frank Longid, Suresh Seshadri