Icahn seeks Dell meeting after securing $5.2 billion for bid
By Michelle Sierra and Leela Parker
(Reuters) - Billionaire investor Carl Icahn asked for a meeting with Dell Inc's special board committee after lining up $5.2 billion in loan commitments to back up his bid for a leveraged recapitalization of the personal computer maker.
Icahn, in an open letter to Dell shareholders, said that financing commitments included $1.6 billion from Jefferies Finance LLC, which will publicly file the papers after markets close on Monday.
"With that we put an end to the unwarranted speculation by Dell that our money would not be available," Icahn said in the letter.
Obtaining the debt financing marks a critical step forward for Icahn's and Southeastern Asset Management's alternative bid for the company. Icahn and Southeastern are asking shareholders to tender 1.1 billion shares at $14 apiece.
The tender offer compares with founder Michael Dell's and Silver Lake Partners' $24.4 billion buyout at $13.65 a share, a price Icahn said substantially undervalues the company. Dell's special board had recommended Michael Dell's offer to shareholders.
Ichan's effort at putting together a superior competing bid for Dell has been rebuffed so far by the special board committee. He asked for a face to face sit down meeting with the board to discuss the offer.
A Dell spokesman was not immediately available for comment.
Icahn was expected to have the financing ready by Monday, ahead of an ISS meeting that could take place as early as this week. ISS is a shareholder advisory group that is expected to publish its view on Dell's bid. A July 18 shareholder vote on Dell's take private plan will follow. Continued...