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Michael Dell and Silver Lake are reportedly nearing a new deal with Dell’s special board committee that would increase the price they would pay for the computer maker in exchange for a modification to the voting rules expected to ease passage of the deal, according to The Wall Street Journal.

The new per-share price would be $13.75, up from an earlier $13.65, and the deal would also include a special dividend for shareholders, the paper reported.

The new deal, which isn’t done yet, would further delay a vote by Dell shareholders that was scheduled for Friday morning.

Last week, the much anticipated vote was delayed once again.  It would have decided whether the company was to stay publicly traded, or revert to its formerly private state courtesy of a buyout from equity firm Silver Lake. The vote, proposed by Dell founder Michael Dell, required a majority vote of 43% or more to go private, or conversely a majority vote against it to stay public.

The newly proposed modification to the voting rules would change the way “abstained” votes count.  They were previously counted as “no” votes, which proved problematic when turnout for the vote wasn’t as high as the buyout group and special committee had hoped, leading to further voting delays.  The new proposal would have only shares that are actually voted count.

The adjustment, which has already come under fire by Carl Icahn, could be enough to get the deal to pass, the paper said.


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