There was an immeasurable distance between the quick and the dead: they did not seem to belong to the same species; and it was strange to think that but a little while before they had spoken and moved and eaten and laughed - W. Somerset Maugham
CORPORATE RAIDER Carl Icahn reportedly is drawing up a shortlist of potential Dell CEO replacements for Michael Dell should his bid for the company be successful.
Icahn and Southeastern Asset Management have made a bid to rival that of Michael Dell and Silver Lake Partners in the high stakes fight over Dell and its board. Now it is being reported that Icahn has already started drawing up a list of candidates that he and Southeastern Asset Management will propose as replacements for Michael Dell as CEO of Dell.
Icahn has previously warned that should his offer for Dell be accepted by the shareholders he would look to not only oust Michael Dell as CEO but replace the firm's board of directors. Reuters reports that Icahn is casting his net far and wide, including consideration of former HP CEO and current Oracle co-president Mark Hurd.
According to Reuters' sources Cisco director Michael Capellas, IBM services head Michael Daniels and Oracle's Hurd are all in the frame, although none of the individuals would confirm having been approached by Icahn.
Michael Dell's initial plan to buy back the company he founded has met with strong opposition by existing shareholders, some of whom think they are getting shortchanged. According to Michael Dell, the firm's reorganisation into an enterprise IT vendor will be easier if the company goes private and doesn't face investor and market scrutiny.
So far Dell's board is backing Michael Dell's and Silver Lake Partners' buyout offer, suggesting that Icahn's offer is short of cash. However some of Dell's investors might like the drastic action that Icahn is promising, along with the fact that his offer allows existing shareholders to maintain a diluted stake in the company.
Should Icahn manage to get his takeover offer accepted by Dell's shareholders, it will set up a sensational return to the PC industry for Hurd and give Dell renewed momemtum to compete with HP. µ
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