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Dell near US$23 bil. deal to take firm private: WSJ

WASHINGTON--Dell is near sealing a US$23 billion megadeal to take private the cash-rich but struggling computer giant as its retools for the post-PC era, The Wall Street Journal reported Monday.

“Late Monday, Mr. (Michael) Dell was in talks with Microsoft Corp. and private-equity firm Silver Lake Partners to offer shareholders between US$13.50 and US$13.75 a share, said people familiar with the matter, about a 25% premium to Dell's stock price in January before the possibility of a deal became public,” the Journal reported.

“The buyout, if approved by shareholders, would be the largest such deal since the financial crisis,” it added.

Dell has not commented on reports circulating in recent weeks which said the popular computer maker, which has slipped from its number one position and has struggled amid a shift to mobile devices, was preparing to go private.

The move, which would delist the company from stock markets, could ease some of the pressure on Dell, which is cash-rich but has been seeing profits slump.

The Texas-based computer maker, which Dell started in his college dormitory room, once topped a market capitalization of US$100 billion as the world's biggest PC producer.

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