Activist investor Carl Icahn has given up on trying to block the buyout of struggling personal computer maker Dell by the company’s founder Michael Dell along with private equity firm Silver Lake.
Icahn and another big shareholder – Southeastern Asset Management – had argued that the almost $25 billion (18.7 billion euros) being offered by Michael Dell for the stock he does not already own undervalues the company.
The holder of nearly nine percent of Dell’s shares, Icahn said he remained opposed to the acquisition, but in a letter to shareholders admitted “it would be almost impossible to win the battle”.
He called the company’s board a dictatorship, adding: “The Dell board, like so many boards in this country, reminds me of Clark Gable’s last words in ‘Gone with the Wind’ – they simply “dont give a damn”. Icahn wrote in his letter.
Dell shareholders are due to vote on the plan on Thursday.