Dell Inc warned on Friday that it would be dangerous to take on a lot of debt and remain a public company given its worsening profit outlook, in a sign that it views proposals from Blackstone Group LP and billionaire investor Carl Icahn as fraught with risk. The number threemaker of personal computers published a 274-page preliminary proxy statement to inform Dell shareholders of how a $24.4 billion buyout proposal from founder and chief executive Michael Dell and private equity firm Silver Lake Partners was put together, and why it is the best of all the alternatives the company’s board had explored.
Icahn has proposed paying $15 per share for 58% of Dell, while Blackstone has indicated it can pay more than $14.25 per share—both involve saddling the company with a lot of debt and keeping it on public markets. Silver Lake’s $13.65 per share all-cash offer would see Dell go private. Dell warned that any leveraged recapitalisation was risky if the company was to remain public.