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Aug 27

HP, Dell throttle up in 3Par chase

Posted by dbedell in SAPmergers and acquisitions, M&A;, HPGoogleDellDeals


HP and Dell on Friday continued their battle royale for 3Par, the data management and cloud computing firm. The deal is the latest in a long string of transactions this summer by big tech firms in their efforts to become even bigger—and move into territory now held by their competitors.

The battle has been raging since the start of last week, when Dell first put in an offer at $18 a share for all outstanding shares of the data storage firm. 3Par accepted. HP came in to the foray this past Monday—offering $24 a share. Dell sneaked in a bid at $24.30 Thursday morning this week, and HP came back that afternoon with a $27 offer.

Dell countered with a matching bid of $27 Friday morning—under a provision in their original agreement, Dell was given the opportunity to match other bids. Shortly after the bid from Dell, HP came back with another counter—$30 a share.

While the contest continues and a winner is as yet unknown—since both companies have the financial clout to bid up further—market pundits are questioning whether 3Par is worth the chase. But, as the FT points out, with few cloud computing data storage firms left to buy, it seems both participants are keen to come out victorious.

The kerfuffle over 3Par is just the latest in a long line of acquisitions over the past few months by big names in the tech industry, as I discussed here.

Since then, the SAP/Sybase marriage has come to fruition—last week they laid out their road map for bringing together mobility, analytics and enterprise information management; Google is poised to harass Skype—which is gearing up for its IPO—in the telephony space; and HP CEO Mark Hurd’s vision of a new world order for IT—where the biggest firms compete with their rivals by acquiring smaller firms to fill in missing pieces—is a number of steps closer to reality.


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