Dell buyout vote postponed to next week

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Dell has delayed its shareholder vote on the proposed takeover by founder Michael Dell to take the company private to 24 July. This will be a significant blow for Michael Dell, who may have to sweeten his $13.65-per-share offer.

Reuters cited a source close to the matter reporting Michael Dell had managed to get several large shareholders on side, including Vanguard Group and BlackRock, but was still 150m shareholder votes short at the time of reporting (although votes were still coming in).

Michael Dell was not allowed to use his shares, representing around 16 per cent of the company’s stock, to vote. He is using all of his stock and $750m to help finance the leveraged buyout of Dell to a group led by investment firm Silver Lake.

Supporters of a leveraged buy out think Dell has a better chance of reversing its fortunes without having to worry about quarterly expectations from the stock market. Opponents (notably Carl Icahn and Southeastern Asset Management) argue the price offered undervalues the company's long-term prospects.