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Icahn Abandons Bid To Prevent Dell From Going Private 51

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the everyone-wants-out dept.
Via El Reg comes news that Carl Icahn has, after a brief battle with Michael Dell for control over the company, thrown in the towel. From the article: "Icahn said in an open letter to shareholders that he still thought that Big Mike's $13.88 per share offer for the firm undervalued it, but had decided that it would be 'almost impossible' to win the battle at the shareholder vote on Thursday. 'I realize that some stockholders will be disappointed that we do not fight on,' he wrote. 'However, over the last decade, mainly through "activism," we have enhanced stockholder value in many companies by billions of dollars. We did not accomplish this by waging battles that we thought we would lose.'"
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Icahn Abandons Bid To Prevent Dell From Going Private

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 10, 2013 @06:02AM (#44806149)

    a main reason why unca carl gave up is that the dell board of directors played like washington politics in __changing the rules of the vote__ so that it (the upcoming vote to approve a buyout bid) favors dell's takeover bid over his... another is that carl's choice of ceo (name unknown, never released publicly?) backed out at last minute.

    • by Xest (935314) on Tuesday September 10, 2013 @07:46AM (#44806459)

      I'd imagine the fact Carl is a fucking dick that no one wanted ruining the opportunity to fix Dell for the sake of a quick buck played a fairly large part in that.

      • If his history is any indication, that would seem more than likely.
      • I'd imagine the fact Carl is a fucking dick that no one wanted ruining the opportunity to fix Dell for the sake of a quick buck played a fairly large part in that.

        This makes no sense at all. Once the shareholders sell their shares, why would they care about the future success of Dell? The "quick buck" is the only thing that matters.

    • by denobug (753200)
      Carl's plan is never to bring Dell to its full potential. He is the M&A expert to break a company down. The only reason Carl is retreating is either it is an utter defeat, or the fact that someone paid him in some form or fashion that he no longer needs to play hardball on Dell's deal.
  • The sooner the better.

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Come on, even Hell has some standards.

      Send him to where ever it is the investment bankers go.

  • Translation (Score:5, Insightful)

    by whisper_jeff (680366) on Tuesday September 10, 2013 @07:12AM (#44806335)

    Translation: I've pumped the value of Dell stock as high as I'm going to get it to go so I now have my eyes set on pumping the value of a different company's stock through my "activism".

    I do appreciate that he air-quoted "activism"...

    • Re:Translation (Score:5, Interesting)

      by UnHolier than ever (803328) <unholy_@h[ ]ail.com ['otm' in gap]> on Tuesday September 10, 2013 @07:25AM (#44806385)
      Or, translation: Michael Dell tried to buy Dell for cheap, Icahn bought some shares and made noise saying it was worth more. Michael Dell ended up paying more. Icahn was right.
  • by LostMyBeaver (1226054) on Tuesday September 10, 2013 @08:31AM (#44806689)
    When a company goes public, it allows professional gamblers buy parts of the company in order to raise money. At this point, these gamblers demand that the company post regular results and news no matter how silly to give them some reason why other gamblers should buy these shares... or vouchers for a higher value. The value of this voucher on the gambling market almost never reflect the actual performance of the company. And the gambler market value has little actual impact on the actual value of the company. It's similar in nature to how betting on a horse doesn't make it run faster. Gambling on a football game doesn't actually alter the results of the game.

    When a company like Dell volunteers to remove itself from the gambling pool because the people who run it feel they'd prefer the value of the company is actually based on the actual results of its performance, it is highly responsible. Like paying off a loan to the bank because you don't need the loan anymore.

    While every experience I've ever had with Dell has been that they're a company full of hackers who lack the ability to do anything other than repackage technology they don't actually understand, I applaud them for setting a great example of financial responsibility even against the will of gamblers who pressure them to behave irresponsibly for their own personal gains.

    I would like to see many other companies take the same path. Other tech companies, food companies, manufacturing companies, etc. The first step to fixing the U.S. economy is to gamble less and behave responsibly.

    Let's hope this becomes a trend. Good job Dell!
    • by Anonymous Coward

      When a company like Dell volunteers to remove itself from the gambling pool because the people who run it feel they'd prefer the value of the company is actually based on the actual results of its performance, it is highly responsible. Like paying off a loan to the bank because you don't need the loan anymore.

      But that's not the reason he's doing this. The reason he's doing this is because he knows the only way to save the company is to make some decisions about which shareholders will freak the hell out. He knows that, so long as he and the board are forced to answer to shareholders, there's no way he can implement the changes he wants to because they will, at least in the short to medium term, be very bad for the bottom dollar and will tank the share price. I have little to no doubt that he believes this course

      • by ISoldat53 (977164)
        No, he's reorganizing the company so that he can go public again in a couple of years and hit the jackpot all over again and bleed the new company again.
    • Going private also removes the pressure to constantly grow. Right now the computers sales are declining for a number of factors and it may be that sales have hit a plateau.
  • the guy is a greenmailer, pure and simple. other men, better men, say instead, "nice place ya got here, shame if anyting would happen to it, cabish?" while flicking ashes on all the papers on the desk.

  • If Icahn believes Dell is worth more than thirteen bucks a share, then he's not paying attention. Dell has already pissed away everything that made them successful in the first place. They got where they are by pioneering a highly-efficient build-to-order process, and for quite a while they had the best tech support in the DOS/Windows world. Those advantages are long gone.

    -jcr

  • I'm waiting for someone to sue a company for their stock going up after they shorted it.

What is wanted is not the will to believe, but the will to find out, which is the exact opposite. -- Bertrand Russell, "Skeptical Essays", 1928

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