Dell Inc. (NASDAQ:DELL) and The Blackstone Group L.P. (NYSE:BX) will be meeting Monday to discuss the terms of Blackstone’s buyout offer, which is said to be superior to founder Michael Dell’s original go-private leveraged buyout offer made earlier this year.
However, Blackstone has apparently not yet answered a critical question Michael Dell had for it: will he continue to be the company’s CEO after the buyout?
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The Blackstone Group L.P. (NYSE:BX) has said it would consider keeping Michael Dell on as CEO after the buyout, but Bloomberg cites sources who said Blackstone still has not yet provided a firm answer to the CEO question.
Blackstone apparently wants Mr. Dell to support its counter-bid and invest a part of the $4.5 billion he was going to invest under his original bid involving the private-equity firm Silver Lake. In fact, Fox Business cites sources who say he is their preferred choice for CEO.
However, uncertainty continues to loom; the firm is also said to be putting an alternative executive plan in place. Sources told Fox Business that other high-profile executives have been contacted in connection with Blackstone’s bid and they include Oracle Corporation (NASDAQ:ORCL) President Mark Hurd, Cisco Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ:CSCO) director Michael Capellas, Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE:HPQ) PC head Todd Bradley and ex-International Business Machines Corp. (NYSE:IBM) executive Michael Daniels. Capellas is said to be Blackstone’s preferred external candidate for the CEO job.
Dell has said he would only consider Blackstone’s deal if it comes with a guarantee that he would still be the company’s CEO. He holds a 15.6 percent stake in Dell Inc. (NASDAQ:DELL) and has said if The Blackstone Group L.P. (NYSE:BX) doesn’t agree to keep him on as CEO after the merger, he he will cash out his stake in the company and walk away. The Dell founder has apparently spoken daily with the Blackstone executives who are working on the negotiations.
In addition to the CEO question, Dell Inc. (NASDAQ:DELL) must also pass Blackstone’s analysis of its financial records. Fox Business reports that Blackstone is heading to the company’s headquarters Monday to begin the analysis, which could last as long as four weeks.
According to Bloomberg however, Carl Icahn, who also submitted a competing bid for Dell, is also planning to move forward with analysis of the PC maker’s financial records.