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TechWeekEurope Readers Back Michael Dell

Peter Judge has been involved with tech B2B publishing in the UK for many years, working at Ziff-Davis, ZDNet, IDG and Reed. His main interests are networking security, mobility and cloud

A small majority back moves to take Dell private

Michael Dell has a good chance of turning Dell‘s fortunes round in his bid to take the company private, according to a poll of TechWeekEurope readers

Early in February, Dell’s founder led a move to take the company off the stock market, backed by venture capitalists Silver Lake, and using his own personal fortune with a $2 billion loan from Microsoft. The deal is designed to free the company from the need to meet shareholders’ expectations every quarter, and give the company time to re-organise to meet enterprise technology needs better. And our readers think it may well work – by a narrow majority.

Poll Dell private turn around

Dell-raiser?

Dell has come a long way from the days when Michael Dell built PCs in his student room, becoming a PC leader thanks to its ability to sell personalised PCs on a massive scale.

A string of acquisitions has given it all the pieces to be a full-strength enterprise vendor, including storage, services and networking, but shareholders are reluctant to underwrite the investment needed to fully integrate these abilities, Michael Dell argues.

The Silver Lake deal gives a longer term opportunity. But will it work? More than a third of readers (36.5 percent) believes it will, while just under a third (30 percent) think it won’t. If the privatised Dell does not succeed, it will most likely be sold off in bits.

Another 18 percent would not commit themselves, saying “Maybe”.

However, there’s a big caveat. The deal still has to get approval, and may fall apart before it is completed. Fifteen percent of TechWeekEurope readers who responded believe we will never know how well Michael Dell could do with a private Dell: they think the buyout will fail.

Adding those people to the ones who think he won’t manage to turn the company into an enterprise tech powerhouse, there’s 45 percent of our readers who think it won’t work.

How well do you know Dell? Try our quiz!