It happened. Dell
today announced it has signed a definitive merger agreement in which company founder, Chairman, and CEO Michael Dell
will acquire the company for approximately $24.4 billion. Microsoft
and Silver Lake Management are also involved the transaction, which had been rumored for weeks
"The Dell Board of Directors acting on the recommendation of a special committee of independent directors unanimously approved a merger agreement under which Michael Dell and Silver Lake Partners will acquire Dell and take the company private subject to a number of conditions, including a vote of the unaffiliated stockholders. Mr. Dell recused himself from all Board discussions and from the Board vote regarding the transaction," Dell stated in a press release.
Under terms of the deal, Michael Dell and his investment partners will pay $13.65 per share in cash. The price represents a premium of 25 percent over Dell's closing share price of $10.88 on January 11, 2013, the last trading day before rumors surrounding the deal were first published.
Michael Dell now becomes a majority owner of the company he created, and it will be up to him to turn the ship around and come up with a plan to navigate the mobile waters the PC industry now finds itself afloat in.
"I believe this transaction will open an exciting new chapter for Dell, our customers and team members," Michael Dell said in a statement. "We can deliver immediate value to stockholders, while we continue the execution of our long-term strategy and focus on delivering best-in-class solutions to our customers as a private enterprise."
According to market research firm Ovum, one of Michael Dell's immediate priorities will be to figure out a product roadmap, and which products and services should be axed.
"The implication of going private is that Dell is planning radical changes to its strategy and product roadmap. While the company might come out of this transition stronger with a product lineup that better meets the needs of businesses and public sector organizations, there will be uncertainty as to what products and services stay, get strengthen, or get eliminated," said Carter Lusher, chief IT analyst at Ovum.