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For Compaq Alumni   (Updated Dec 18, 2021) 

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Select the links below that fit your situation...

- Current HP or HPE employee: Networking and Information for Current Employees. Join Ex-Compaq* group on LinkedIn.

- HP or HPE employee in the process of leaving: use the ASAP checklist. Join Ex-Compaq* and "HP Connections" on Linkedin groups on LinkedIn.

- Former Compaq employee who never worked for HP: Join Ex-Compaq* group on LinkedIn.

(The Ex-Compaq group on LinkedIn is operated by Compaq alumni, not by the HPAA.)


"Potential Private Retirement Benefit" letter from Social Security. Look at the "Year Reported" and the "Type of Benefit." If "A" -- in the previous year, you rolled the assets into a different plan, bought an annuity, or took the cash. If "M" -- you left before vesting in that plan. How to investigate: hpalumni.org/PotentialBenefitLetter.

Compaq 401(k) plan #001:

- Name: "Compaq Computer Corporation 401(k) Investment Plan"

- EIN: 76-0011617 Plan number: 001 ("EIN" = IRS Employer Identification Number)

- Abbreviated as: 76-0011617-001

- Administrator: The HP Retirement Service Center is the primary administrator for HP U.S. pension and 401(k) accounts, including any accounts that HP predecessor companies (such as Compaq, DEC, and EDS) may have had. Operated by Fidelity Investments.
1-800-457-4015, M-F 7:30 AM to 11:00 PM Central Time. Outside the U.S., call 1-508-787-9902 collect. Website: https://nb.fidelity.com/public/nb/hp/home (Contact the Retirement Service Center; local Fidelity branches are primarily sales offices.)

- Previous administrator before Compaq was sold to HP -- Vanguard.

- Be sure you have a valid beneficiary designation on file at Fidelity.

- Benefits under 401(k) plans are not insured by the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC.)

- For details of the plan, see the last SEC report on the Compaq 401(k) Plan (from 2002, the year that Compaq was sold to HP.)

Compaq 401(k) plan #002:

- Name: "NetWorth Inc 401K Pension Plan" [Compaq acquired NetWorth Inc of Irving, TX in 1995.]

- EIN: 76-0011617 Plan number: 002 ("EIN" = IRS Employer Identification Number)

- Abbreviated as: 76-0011617-002

- Administrator: The HP Retirement Service Center is the primary administrator for HP U.S. pension and 401(k) accounts, including any accounts that HP predecessor companies (such as Compaq, DEC, and EDS) may have had. Operated by Fidelity Investments.
1-800-457-4015, M-F 7:30 AM to 11:00 PM Central Time. Outside the U.S., call 1-508-787-9902 collect. Website: https://nb.fidelity.com/public/nb/hp/home (Contact the Retirement Service Center; local Fidelity branches are primarily sales offices.)

- Previous administrator before Compaq was sold to HP -- unknown.

- Be sure you have a valid beneficiary designation on file at Fidelity.

- Benefits under 401(k) plans are not insured by the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation (PBGC.)

- Cannot find a Form 5500 report filed since January 1, 2010 on this plan.


HP's purchase of Compaq was closed on May 3, 2002. Compaq shareholders received 0.6325 share of HPQ in exchange for each CPQ share -- 18% over market price. CPQ stock was retired. HWP stock symbol changed to HPQ.

HP Breakup. On Nov 1, 2015, the legal name of the Hewlett-PackardCompany was changed to HP Inc. and a new, completely separate company -- Hewlett Packard Enterprise (no hyphen; singular; green-rectangle logo) -- was spun out. Portions of HPE were later spun out into DXC and Micro Focus, which have spun out other separate companies. Details: HP Breakup

HP Inc. is the legal successor to the companies acquired by Hewlett-Packard before the company was split into HP Inc. and Hewlett Packard Enterprise. Responsibility for commitments to former employees of Compaq, EDS, etc. remain with HP Inc. -- regardless of whether the employee's last business unit ended up in HP or HPE. Includes employment verification and any retiree health, pension, etc. plans.

Which HP-related companies have me classified as a retiree or former employee? Given HP's history of acquisitions and spinoffs, this may not be obvious. If any doubt, check here: Which Company

Contacts at HP Inc. -- the successor company: HP contacts

Make sure that the legal successor to every company you ever worked for has your current postal address. Even if not classified by the company as a "Retiree" or if long gone -- in case of pension plan changes, employment lawsuits, settlements, or other issues. Update address at former company

Check your LinkedIn profile! Profiles were changed without notice. HPE changed many decades-old HP positions to HPE; LinkedIn deleted many employers. Recruiters and hiring managers view entries that don't make sense -- such as HPE employment before Nov 2015 -- as signs of a fake profile. You may wish to feature your EDS, Tandem, or other background. Step-by-step: hpalumni.org/LinkedIn

Time to untangle your stock! Depending on when and how you acquired stock, you may now have stock in up to six HP-related companies in various accounts -- or have missed cash payouts. An HP Alumni team has developed a step-by-step process. Employee Stock  

HPAA's detailed Stock Decoder tables for: Compaq   DEC    Tandem

If you bought CPQ shares under the Compaq employee stock purchase plan, those shares were automatically converted to HPQ shares at the time of the merger. Unless you have sold or transferred them, the shares (and your corresponding new Hewlett Packard Enterprise and other spinoff shares) are being held by the last administrator of the plan, Morgan Stanley Smith Barney -- which is no longer being paid by the company for this work. Details and HPAA advice for former CPQ employee shareholders

Morgan Stanley customers are getting different results from different divisions of the company -- depending on whether they were participants in the Compaq Employee Stock Purchase Plan or had transferred their HP stock to a personal account at Morgan Stanley's local-office-based retail brokerage division. Morgan Stanley issues reported by members

Service at predecessor companies. Of HP's many predecessor companies, only HP and DEC had retiree healthcare programs. Only HP, DEC, and EDS had pension plans. Over the years, HP, DEC, and EDS set aside money in dedicated trust funds to pay for those programs. Compaq, Tandem, Autonomy, etc. did not have retiree healthcare or pensions among their benefits programs. Their employees did not have those expectations and there were no corresponding trust funds to pass on to an acquiring company. Therefore, employees of those companies do not get credit under HP's retiree healthcare or pension programs for service at the predecessor company. (DEC employees get retiree health credit for DEC and HP service but not Compaq service.) Confusingly, predecessor service counts for vacation/FTO. Details: DEC  EDS

Employment verification and experience letters for Hewlett-Packard or Hewlett Packard Enterprise, predecessor companies, and successor companies. Employment and Salary Verification   Experience Letter

Compaq news:

- October 25, 1991: "The Day Everything Changed at Compaq" LinkedIn "Pulse" article by Sean Burke

- "Open: How Compaq Ended IBM's PC Domination and Helped Invent Modern Computing" by Rod Canion. "...a series of risky and daring decisions often facing criticism and incredulity that allowed the open PC standard marketplace to thrive and the incredible benefits of open computing to be realized." BenBella Books (October 15, 2013) ASIN: 1937856992  Author's website: The Compaq Story

- Documentary based on Rod Canion's "Open" -- "Silicon Cowboys"

Other links:

- Contacts for former HP and HPE employees  

Compaq history:

- Compaq company history (via the Internet Archive)

- Gordon Bell's Compaq/DEC timeline

- Compaq Wikipedia article with references and links. Note: Wikipedia articles change over time, may not cover all aspects of the topic consistently, and may not be written from a neutral point of view.

Operated by volunteers. Not officially endorsed or supported. More about the HPAA

Rod Canion, Jim Harris, and Bill Murto

Rod Canion, Jim Harris, and Bill Murto 1982. 


If formerly a regular, direct U.S. employee of HP or HPE -- or are in the process of leaving -- join the HP Alumni Association. No charge, thanks to HPAA's Supporting Members.


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