Tech giant Dell and its partners MSD Partners and Silver Lake have agreed to buy EMC in a deal valued at $67 billion or at $33.15 per share, reports Techcrunch. Note that the same report mentions that Dell is valued at around $25 billion, less than half the size of EMC.
Post acquisition, EMC will be merged into Dell, while VMware, a part of EMC, will continue to be publicly traded as a separate company. EMC on the other hand will no longer be publicly traded as it will go private under Dell. EMC’s 80% stake in VMware will be transferred to Dell. According to the companies, this merger will make the combined entity the largest privately controlled technology company in the world.
The deal is expected to close in mid-2016, subject to regulatory approval. With this acquisition, Dell will be able to compete in the cloud computing and storage space, while moving away from its server and consumer business. Other than VMware, EMC provides products and services in categories like information storage, archiving, backup & recovery, storage and content management, enterprise content management, security, cloud computing and data computing, all of which will now be Dell products.
Note that Dell will lead the new organization, with EMC CEO Joe Tucci retiring. Tucci apparently had put off his retirement a couple of times due to the lack of a suitable successor. The CEO had even attempted to sell the company to HP, although the deal fell through after HP’s offer was considered inadequate. Interestingly, the current deal has a provision that will allow EMC to seek out other buyers, and get a discounted breakup fee in case of better offers.
Big deals in the tech industry: Dell’s deal to buy EMC for $67 billion is second only to the $164 billion paid by AOL for acquiring Time Warner in early 2000. This acquisition turned out to be one of the biggest disasters of all time, with the combined companies reporting a loss of $99 billion by 2003. AOL was eventually spun off by Time Warner as a separate company in 2009 and was eventually acquired by Verizon for $4.4 billion in May this year. However, Time Warner is not quite a tech company, which makes the current the largest deal in tech. The second largest tech deal would be Facebook’s acquisition of WhatsApp which went through last year with a valuation of $22 billion.
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