Icahn presents counter-offer for Dell

Billionaire investor Carl Icahn, together with Southeastern Asset Management, has proposed a counter-offer to the Silver Lake/Michael Dell private equity takeover bid.

According to Reuters, under Dell’s leveraged recapitalisation plan, shareholders in Dell would receive a once-off dividend of $US12 per share, with the company borrowing to fund the $US21 billion payment.

Unlike the Dell and Silver Lake deal, under Icahn’s offer existing shareholders will retain any stock they hold in the company.

If accepted, Icahn will also appoint a new board of directors to oversee the company, which will not include founder Michael Dell.

The counter-offer comes after Dell and Silver Lake offered shareholders $US24.4 billion, or $US13.65 per share, to take the company private in a deal involving Microsoft.

“It is insulting to shareholders’ intelligence for the board to tell them that this board only has the best interests of shareholders at heart,” Icahn and Southeastern state in a letter to shareholders.

“We are often cynical about corporate boards, but this Board has brought that cynicism to new heights.”

In late January, SmartCompany reported Microsoft and founder Michael Dell joined a bid by private equity firm Silver Lake Capital to take the company private, with a $US24.4 billion deal struck in early February.

In a previous offer, Icahn had offered shareholders $US15 per share for a 58% stake in the company.


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