A shareholder vote on Thursday appears set to give control of the US tech giant to its founder,
The vote had been delayed three times over the past few months, amid fierce opposition from some shareholders led by billionaire investor
But after a modified voting process was approved to exclude nonvoting shares from the tally, Icahn acknowledged defeat this week.
The move will likely give another chance to Dell, which missed the tech sector shift to mobile devices away from desktop and laptop PCs.
"Shareholders will benefit from
But Dell's future is far from guaranteed, as it seeks to move into software and services to make up for the steep declines in the PC business.
"It's a very risky situation for Dell," said
Kay said Dell will have difficulty reshaping the company but that "they now have permission to shift the focus of the enterprise more rapidly."
Analysts say Dell needs some radical changes, and that such moves are harder as a public company where shareholders press for quarterly profit targets.
"I think at this point you have to give it a couple of years to know if its working," Kay said.
Kay said Dell needs to look at "trimming" its consumer products, like PCs, which are still in steep decline but that it has "to get through the eye of the needle" on enterprise services, where it goes up against rivals like IBM.
The buyout plan now appears set to succeed after the Dell special panel examining options agreed on a process that would require a majority of shares voted, instead of a majority of all outstanding shares not affiliated with
Icahn said this change in the voting procedure made it "almost impossible to win the battle" at Thursday's shareholder meeting, but maintained that the plan "undervalues" Dell.
Dell, once the world's biggest PC seller, has fallen behind rivals
Dell has failed in smartphones and tablets, but has seen some success in software and business services through its acquisitions.
Dell said last month its quarterly profit plunged 72 per cent from a year ago to
It was the company's seventh consecutive decline in profits.
The Dell special panel said in July the personal computer business appears even bleaker than earlier forecasts, and that Dell still relies on the PC segment for two-thirds of its revenues.
Under his plan, Dell would hire more sales personnel and "invest for growth in the PC and tablet business... to enhance our ability to compete," according to the memo he filed with stock market regulators earlier this year.
"While Dell's strategy in the PC business has been to maximise gross margins, following the transaction, we expect to focus instead on maximising revenue and cash flow growth with the goal of improving long-term sales and competitive positioning."
Most Popular Stories
- Grizzly Bears Could Be Taken Off Endangered List
- Ford Plans New Cars, Jobs in 2014
- 'Rape Insurance' Bill Passes in Michigan
- Hawaii Official Who Release Obama Certificate Only Victim of Plane Crash
- Gold, Silver Slide on Prospects of Fed Exit
- Ted Cruz Coloring Book Selling Briskly
- Boehner Lashes Out Against Ted Cruz, Far Right
- Kim Jong Un's Uncle Executed
- TFA Recruiting DACA Recipients
- Podesta Likely to Reject Keystone XL