February 2, 2018 / 2:26 PM / 6 months ago

Dell explores IPO or potential merger with VMware

Feb 2 (Reuters) - Dell Technologies Inc said on Friday it is evaluating a potential public offering of its common stock or a potential business combination between the U.S. computer maker and business software provider VMware Inc.

"The potential business opportunities currently being evaluated by Dell Technologies do not include the sale to a third party of Dell Technologies or VMware," Dell said in a filing. (bit.ly/2DV54Tk)

Dell, the world's largest privately held technology company, has been under pressure to boost its profitability and is seeking new avenues for growth after the debt-laden EMC deal failed to deliver performance it projected.

The company said in the filing there can be no assurance that any potential business opportunity will be pursued.

VMware's shares were up nearly 2 percent.

"We are not in a position to speculate on the outcome of Dell's evaluation of potential business opportunities," VMware Chief Executive Pat Gelsinger said in a statement.

Dell plans to review a possible reverse merger with VMware, as well as other alternatives, including an initial public offering or asset divestitures, Reuters reported on Thursday, citing sources familiar with the matter.

Dell delisted from the Nasdaq five years ago amid a struggling PC market when private equity firm Silver Lake helped founder Michael Dell's $24.9 billion deal in 2013 to take the company private.

The Round Rock, Texas-based company bought data storage provider EMC Corp for $67 billion in 2016, but since then costs and a challenging data storage market have eroded its margins. (Reporting by Sonam Rai in Bengaluru; Editing by Saumyadeb Chakrabarty)

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