Dell's future gets messier: Shareholders expected to vote against buyout?

Summary:The entire $24.4 billion buyout plan could end up being scrapped, based on a new report.

Dell's future as a private company is looking increasingly unlikely based on a new report on Wednesday.

The Wall Street Journal reported, based on unnamed sources said to be familiar with the deal, that at least three of the biggest shareholder groups are planning to vote against CEO Michael Dell's $24.4 billion buyout bid.

Those firms are said to be the Vanguard Group, State Street Corp., and BlackRock.

See also: Dell's future: What the tech buyer needs to know

Shareholders were expected to vote tomorrow (Thursday, July 18). But, as if things weren't messy enough, that arrangement was also called into question earlier this week.

The possible delay follows a move by prominent Dell investor Carl Icahn last week in which the business magnate dropped hints touting his new proposal to the company founder's plans once again.

Icahn's latest suggestion outlined that Dell would self tender 1.1 billion shares of stock for $14 a share plus one transferable warrant for every four shares purchased. These warrants would allow shareholders to purchase a share of Dell for $20 for seven years. Should Dell shares be worth more than $20, the idea is that these shareholders would benefit.

Here's a quick recap of where things have stood up until early July as company executives fight over whether Dell should revert to operating as a private company.

As of June 5 , the Round Rock, Texas-based corporation had two options on the table:

  • An all-cash deal from Michael Dell and Silver Lake Partners for $13.65 per share

  • An alternative from Icahn and Southeastern Asset Management that leverages the company to pay a $12 special dividend and buy up 72 percent of existing shares.

Blackstone was previously involved in the mix , but later dropped out amid the global PC market meltdown .

There have been debates back and forth over whether Michael Dell and company should raise their initial $24.4 billion offer.

Icahn tried requesting a meeting with Dell's special committee on the matter after lining up approximately $5.2 billion in loans to back his alternative buyout bid.

However, the special committee rejected Icahn's bid as "inconsistent" .

Concurring with Silver Lake, top proxy advisory firm Institutional Shareholder Services backed the CEO's plan.

Topics: PCs, Dell, Hardware, Tech Industry

About

Rachel King is a staff writer for CBS Interactive based in San Francisco, covering business and enterprise technology for ZDNet, CNET and SmartPlanet. She has previously worked for The Business Insider, FastCompany.com, CNN's San Francisco bureau and the U.S. Department of State. Rachel has also written for MainStreet.com, Irish Americ... Full Bio

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