Hewlett Packard (HP) has said it will no longer sell printers and related equipment through arch-rival Dell, rumoured to be launching its own branded range of printers.
Although Dell chief executive Michael Dell has said his company has been considering selling its own printers, a Dell spokesperson was unavailable to provide more details.
But HP spokeswoman Diane Roncal said HP's reseller relationship with Dell would be "no longer valid given the company's intent to sell Dell-branded printers".
According to Roncal, Dell provides a small amount of HP's printer sales. HP sent a letter to Dell with its decision yesterday.
Giga Information Group analyst Rob Enderle said HP's response was "a gutsy move to cut Dell off at the knees by pulling your product".
Enderle maintained that having been hit by rumours of Dell getting into the printer market, HP had decided to take the initiative and make what was likely to be a foregone conclusion happen on their terms - where it could do Dell the most damage as opposed to vice versa.
"The risk is that it may force Dell to start their own successful printing and imaging product brand," Enderle said.
"The benefit is that they know this business far better than Dell does and own the segment, and may be better able to slap Dell down than if Dell were able to use a more measured approach," he added.
HP's printer division reported an operating profit of $768m in its fiscal second quarter.
New Vikendi map adds snow, snowmobiles and new aural and visual twists
Faults and bad weather ground SpaceX, Blue Origin, Arianespace and United Alliance
New regulation expected to cut greenhouse gas emissions by about 17 million metric tonnes between 2020 and 2050
Molybdenum ditelluride is a two-dimensional material that can be easily stacked into multiple layers to create a memory cell