Microsoft in talks to invest up to $3 billion to help Dell go private

By Shawn Knight · 5 replies
Jan 22, 2013
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  1. A week ago it was revealed that Dell was in talks with a couple of private equity firms with regards to taking the company private.  A day later we learned that one of those firms was Silver Lake Partners but...

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  2. Littleczr

    Littleczr TS Addict Posts: 439   +86

    I don't get it. Why would Microsoft be interested in Dell going private and even investing 1 billion. I thought if you are a private company you cannot be in the stock exchange.
  3. davislane1

    davislane1 TS Grand Inquisitor Posts: 4,738   +3,757

    Private and public structures have their advantages and disadvantages. If Dell feels they'd be better served as a private entity, it makes sense to pull it out of the exchange. Their stock has been in a steady down trend since 2005 anyways, so depending on their larger financial situation (which I am ignorant of), this might be a smart move from a short-term perspective.
  4. ThanosPAS

    ThanosPAS TS Booster Posts: 47   +12

    They won't have their stocks exchanged in the market, still they can have shares, but this doesn't mean that minor inverstors can't be traded on public.
  5. I see a small conflict-of-interest here. other PC vendors may be suspicious of special pricing from ms to dell, unless rumors are true and windows will be going free-of-charge.
  6. psycros

    psycros TS Evangelist Posts: 1,876   +1,297

    I wouldn't put much stock (if any) in the idea of Windows being free at some point. <I>Subscription-based</I>, certainly - Microsoft has been pushing this for years. As long as their enterprise update servers supported it, I think a significant minority of businesses would be OK with subscriptions <I>now</I>. Even consumers might get on board if the cost was very low..say, $50/year. Microsoft would be fools to ask more - a subscription means guaranteed revenue, and seeing as how 70%-plus of Windows installs are pirated, that would be major gain. Those without broadband obviously wouldn't be able to take advantage of this so they'd need to keep retail discs for those folks. There is a downside, though: anyone whose subscription expired would be at high risk for exploits unless they were using something like WSUS Offline Update. (This is already true of those folks who simply never update for whatever reason, but their numbers are steadily declining.) Microsoft can't really give Windows away because the investors and analysts would freak. They <I>do</I> offer various kickbacks to get manufacturers into Windows Phone, so its sort of "free"..just not on Microsoft's balance sheet. Ultimately the only way Windows goes free-to-use is if a competing (and low cost) OS starts getting significant market share on the desktop. That's only going to happen if a major player - Google, perhaps - gets support from major software vendors and puts serious resources into pushing their chosen alternative.

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