Hewlett Packard Enterprise has agreed to acquire Juniper Networks for $14 billion, representing more than half of HPE's $21 billion market value. The acquisition comes at a 32% premium to Juniper's closing price, which was $30.22 before the deal was announced.
With this strategic acquisition, HPE aims to strengthen its networking capabilities in response to the growing demand for faster server-to-server communication driven by recent advances in artificial intelligence. Texas-based HPE is a provider of cloud services to a diverse clientele ranging from small businesses to large corporations and government agencies, and was originally spun off from legacy technology giant Hewlett-Packard, which was founded in 1939 by William Hewlett and David Packard. The 2015 split resulted in the creation of HPE, which specializes in data center equipment and servers, and HP, which focuses on personal computers and printers.
Juniper, like its larger competitor Cisco Systems, makes networking equipment such as routers and switches, and reported 12% revenue growth in 2022, the fastest pace since 2010. In line with the wider technology sector, the company is focusing on the potential of new artificial intelligence services to drive further growth. The consolidation of HPE and Juniper is expected to significantly strengthen their capabilities in building data centres and managing networks adapted for AI-based operations.