Dell's deal to go private complete, no change in product plans

Dell and Silver Lake buy out the company for $24.9 billion

By , IDG News Service |  IT Management

A deal to buy out Dell was completed on Tuesday, officially taking the company private.

The company's CEO Michael Dell and investment partner Silver Lake are buying the company for US$24.9 billion. The company's shareholders will get $13.88 per share as part of the deal, including a dividend of $0.13 per share.

With the deal complete, Dell can return to business as usual. The original buyout offer of $24.4 billion was proposed by Dell and Silver Lake in February, but was opposed by some shareholders including Carl Icahn, who made multiple counteroffers to take the company private. Ultimately Icahn backed off and shareholders voted in favor of the revised deal in September.

Michael Dell believed that taking the company private could remove the pressure of answering to shareholders, and give leaders more flexibility in decision making. The company has committed to retaining its product lines, including PCs and enterprise products.

Dell reentered the consumer tablet market earlier this month with new Venue tablets running on Android and Windows 8.1. The company last month refreshed its laptop lineup, but cut the number of models in its overall product mix.

The company's consumer and enterprise products will remain intact, and the central focus will continue to be on the midmarket, Bobbi Dangerfield, vice president of commercial sales operations at Dell, said in an interview last week.

The company is also expanding the reach of its commercial products worldwide, Dangerfield said. Dell is opening two more centers next year in Sao Paolo and Dubai where customers will be able to test software, servers and other Dell products before deployment. The company already has 14 such centers worldwide.

Customer support operations is something the company is trying to improve, with a focus on providing more customized and remote support, Dangerfield said. The company is retaining its international customer service operations, and ProSupport product support packages will be provided depending on the type of customer, their preferences and what they are willing to pay.

Agam Shah covers PCs, tablets, servers, chips and semiconductors for IDG News Service. Follow Agam on Twitter at @agamsh. Agam's e-mail address is agam_shah@idg.com

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