Hours after Dell increased its offer for cloud storage vendor 3PAR to $1.6bn (£1.03bn) – an offer the company accepted – HP has made a counter-offer worth an extra $200m.
HP’s offer values the firm at $1.8bn (£1.15bn) and the company said that not only had the board approved the deal in advance, but that HP would not require any additional financing and could complete it by the end of the year.
“Our revised proposal offers superior value to 3PAR’s shareholders,” said Dave Donatelli, executive vice president and general manager of Enterprise Servers, Storage and Networking at HP.
“Not only is our offer superior to Dell’s proposal, HP remains uniquely positioned to execute on this combination given the number of synergies between the two companies.”
The 3PAR board gave Dell time to match the offer, and accepted when it did, but HP’s counter move is a direct appeal to shareholders for control of the company.
“The chances are that Dell will win the battle, but HP will make them pay for it,” Rob Enderle, principal analyst at the Enderle Group, told V3.co.uk.
Both companies could afford the bidding war, he said, but the question was how far they could go. HP is currently being run by a caretaker chief executive whereas Dell’s bid was personally backed by the company’s boss and founder, Michael Dell.
3PAR is also more important to Dell’s future, especially in the virtualis ation and server space, he explained. The server wing of the company is particularly keen to get hold of 3PAR technology.
The final factor in Dell’s favour, he said, was the support of the 3PAR board. HP is approaching this as a hostile takeover and, given the choice, Dell will be the first choice.
“Dell historically has done better with acquisitions – HP has blown up a few,” he said.
“Under Dell, the board gets independence, under HP they won’t.”
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