because it gives management the time to remake the company away from the
prying eyes of competitors and the distraction of public shareholders.
The company has a strong balance sheet, a promising set of technology assets, and it can be had for a relatively low price, the analyst said.
"A private Dell is a stronger Dell," said analyst Patrick Moorhead with Moor Insights & Strategy. "When Dell goes private, there is going to be this older player with a new way of competing.
"I think Dell will shake up things in the industry. Michael and the board and the investors want to see this company move a lot quicker. By going private, Dell is going to move a lot quicker."
Dell and its backers signaled Tuesday that they will keep pushing ahead with the company's ongoing journey to become a one-stop shop for selling advanced hardware, software and services to large and mid-sized business customers. Dell has spent more than $13 billion over the past five years to acquire more than two dozen tech companies involved in storage networks, data networking, services, security and software.
Egon Durban, a managing partner of Silver Lake, said the investment company will work with Dell's management to "accelerate the company's transformational strategy to become an integrated and diversified global IT (information technology) provider."
"Michael Dell is a true visionary and one of the pre-eminent leaders of the global technology industry," Durban said.
The company's next step is to actively seek alternative buyout bidders, but analysts say a competing buyer is unlikely to be found because of the size of the deal and because the CEO and largest shareholder is part of the existing bid.
Marshall and other analysts said the deal makes sense because Dell has plenty of cash on its balance sheet and generates a strong cash flow from operations. That will help cover the interest expense of the debt financing for the deal and, potentially, pay down debt.
Some analysts were more skeptical of the deal.
Charles Wolf with Needham & Co. told Reuters news service that Dell Inc. has been rebuilding itself for several years since Michael Dell retook control of the company from former CEO Kevin Rollins in 2007.
"There has been no turnaround, and the bottom line is Michael was the one who built the company," Wolf said.
Analyst Shaw Wu with Sterne Agee said, "We are not sure going private improves the company's fundamental position."
Despite its efforts to remake itself, Dell Inc. still depends on its PC-related business for about 70 percent of its revenue, Wu said, and that part of the company is under pressure from the growing popularity of smart mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets.
Computer industry rival Hewlett-Packard Co. said it would try to capitalize on new uncertainty about Dell created by the buyout.
"The company faces an extended period of uncertainty and transition that will not be good for its customers," HP said in a statement. "And with a significant debt load, Dell's ability to invest in new products and services will be extremely limited. Leveraged buyouts tend to leave existing customers and innovation at the curb. We believe Dell's customers will now be eager to explore alternatives, and HP plans to take full advantage of that opportunity."
Other analysts responded that HP has enough of its own business challenges to make it an unlikely critic of Dell.
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