The opposition to the Dell (DELL) buyout has gotten even stronger, with No. 2 outside shareholder T. Rowe Price joining Southeastern Asset Management, the biggest investor, in saying it won't support the deal.Baltimore-based T. Rowe's chief investment officer said the fund firm doesn't plan to back the proposal "as put forward." T. Rowe Price owned 4.41% of Dell's shares outstanding as of Sept. 30, according to FactSet data.
The Wall Street Journal has a nice summary of where things stand with the top investors. Among other large shareholders, most haven't commented one way or the other, but those who have aren't happy with the $13.65-a-share offer for the Round Rock, Texas, computer seller.
Pzena Investment Management, the No. 19 investor, has indicated it won't vote with the takeover team, while Harris Associates and Yacktman Asset Management look to be leaning against it, though nothing definitive on their votes has been reported. Below, you can see the holdings of the big investors and their positions.
Note the lone green entry -- that's Michael Dell, who, along with Silver Lake and a $2 billion loan from Microsoft (MSFT), is leading the attempt to buy the company he founded. Red indicates those who, at this point, aren't voting for the deal, and yellow goes to those who have expressed their displeasure. It's starting to help the shares a bit. Recently, the stock was at $13.85, 20 cents above the acquisition price but still well below the 52-week high of $18.36.
Norway's Norges Bank, No. 17 and highlighted in purple, is going on the watch list only because it has a history of activism, and FactSet rates it as a high on the activism threat spectrum. However, its involvement in governance issues has mostly been around the process for board nominations and splitting corporate chairman and CEO roles.
As this changes, we'll update it. For the time being, owners of 14.7% of Dell's shares outright oppose the plan or have suggested they will. (To expand the chart and get a larger view, click it.)
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