Public Dell to go private?
A top proxy advisory firm is recommending that Dell shareholders vote in favor of a deal that would allow the company’s founder and an investment firm to buy the computer maker and take it private.
Michael Dell and Silver Lake Partners have offered to buy Round Rock, Texas-based Dell Inc. for $13.65 per share, or a total of $24.4 billion. Michael Dell believes he can turn the company around by taking it private and diversifying into niches, such as business software, data storage and consulting.
But Carl Icahn, a billionaire investor and Dell’s second-largest shareholder, says he wants Dell to remain publicly traded and boost value for shareholders by buying back $16 billion in stock.
The company has backed Michael Dell’s proposal and said that Icahn doesn’t have adequate financing for his plan. Shareholders will vote on the buyout offer at the company’s annual meeting on July 18.
Beach town faces businesses’ suit
Dewey Beach is defending its business license fees against a class-action lawsuit.
The News Journal of Wilmington reports attorney and businessman Alex Pires filed the lawsuit against the town earlier this year. He says the town is treating its business license fee like a tax, and it is much higher than the fees nearby towns charge. Pires is asking the Chancery Court to order refunds for all the companies that paid the fee since 2007.
In response, Dewey Beach argues its charter specifically prevents only three kinds of taxes: a beach-access tax, a personal property tax or taxes on long-term apartment and condominium rentals. The town says all other taxes are fair game.
Buffett’s benevolence in billions
Billionaire Warren Buffett is giving five charities more than $2.6 billion worth of Berkshire Hathaway Inc. stock as part of his overall plan to give away his fortune gradually.
Buffett announced the annual gifts Monday. The biggest block of Class B shares of Berkshire stock worth $2 billion is going to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
Buffett also gave 1.75 million shares to his own foundation and 1.2 million shares to each of his three children’s foundations. The Class B shares were at $115.42 in trading on Monday.
Last year, Buffett announced plans to double the amount of stock he gives to his children’s foundations because he has been pleased with the work they’ve done.
The chairman and CEO of Berkshire outlined his charitable plans in 2006 and has been making annual gifts since then.