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  • Feb. 4, 2013, 11:24 AM

    Dell (DELL -2.4%) is "very, very close" to striking a $13.50/share LBO deal, David Faber reports - he thinks an announcement could come tomorrow, and that Microsoft (MSFT -0.5%) will put in $2B. Dell shares have slumped to $13.30 following the WSJ's report of a $13-$14/share deal price. Update (12:34PM ET): The WSJ now reports the price is likely to be in the $13.50-$13.75/share range. Microsoft is expected to invest ~$2B, Silver Lake over $1B, and Michael Dell's P-E firm ~$700M.

    | Feb. 4, 2013, 11:24 AM | 6 Comments
  • Feb. 1, 2013, 6:00 AM

    The deal to take Dell (DELL) private could reportedly be finalized over the weekend and announced on Monday. As already speculated, Michael Dell will gain majority control, while Silver Lake and Microsoft (MSFT) will become minority shareholders, although there's no word on the final price. Barclays (BCS), Bank of America (BAC), Credit Suisse (CS) and RBC Capital (RY) will provide $15B of debt financing.

    | Feb. 1, 2013, 6:00 AM | 2 Comments
  • Jan. 30, 2013, 4:59 AM

    Michael Dell is reportedly looking to gain majority control of Dell (DELL) by adding $500M-$1B of his own money to his $3.6B, 15.7% stake in the efforts to take the company private. Such a combination would mean that Dell would contribute over half of the $8-9B equity payment in the deal, with more money coming from Silver Lake and possibly Microsoft (MSFT). DELL has so far received no other bids, while it's also considering paying a special dividend.

    | Jan. 30, 2013, 4:59 AM | 1 Comment
  • Jan. 29, 2013, 3:47 PM

    Dell (DELL +1.8%) spikes to $13.26 after the FT reports Silver Lake is willing to pay $15/share. Would that be enough to satisfy shareholders who view a $13-$14/share offer as inadequate? (more) Update: The WSJ reports Microsoft's (MSFT) role in the deal remains one of several issues that need to be worked out. However, sources insist the deal remains on track.

    | Jan. 29, 2013, 3:47 PM | 5 Comments
  • Jan. 22, 2013, 11:34 AM

    Microsoft (MSFT -0.5%) - yes, Microsoft - is in now a participant in Dell (DELL +2.7%) LBO talks, David Faber reports. Faber's sources claim Microsoft could provide $1B-$3B in mezzanine financing for its third-biggest PC OEM client to help facilitate a deal. No word on whether Microsoft is also looking to further its hardware ambitions along the way. (more on Dell)

    | Jan. 22, 2013, 11:34 AM | 10 Comments
  • Jan. 10, 2013, 1:14 PM

    Microsoft (MSFT) confirms its acquisition of home automation/media-sharing software firm R2 Studios. In tandem with the deal, Microsoft is naming R2 founder/Sling Media co-founder Blake Kirkorian a VP for its Interactive Entertainment unit, which is responsible for building out the gaming and media content ecosystem for the Xbox and other devices. The move comes as Xbox music/video consumption continues to grow, and Microsoft reportedly works on a media-centric Xbox set-top.  (previous)

    | Jan. 10, 2013, 1:14 PM | 4 Comments
  • Jan. 2, 2013, 7:01 PM

    Microsoft (MSFT) has reportedly beat out Apple and Google to acquire R2 Studios, a home automation/media-sharing startup launched by Sling Media founder Blake Kirkorian. Kirkorian's recent resignation from Amazon's board had heightened M&A speculation. R2 has released a costly Android app for managing home automation systems and has been awarded patents for controlling electronic devices, but has been quiet about its broader plans. Look for Microsoft to bundle R2's tech with the Xbox, Windows 8/RT, and Windows Phone. (previous)

    | Jan. 2, 2013, 7:01 PM | 3 Comments
  • Dec. 6, 2012, 12:36 PM

    Facebook (FB -0.9%) is in talks to acquire Microsoft's (MSFT -0.1%) Atlas ad-serving/measurement platform, sources tell Kara Swisher. Facebook reportedly thinks Atlas could help its efforts to build a display ad network rivaling Google's DoubleClick. The company has already announced a mobile ad network and has seen good early uptake for its Facebook Exchange ad re-targeting platform, as it tries to monetize its 1B+ users and mountains of data both on and off its site and apps. (previous)

    | Dec. 6, 2012, 12:36 PM | 4 Comments
  • Nov. 7, 2012, 6:42 PM

    Pres. Obama's re-election doesn't bode well for the odds of a tax holiday on overseas cash, notes Eric Savitz. That's problematic for large-cap tech names such as Apple (AAPL), Microsoft (MSFT), and Cisco (CSCO), which respectively have $83B, $54B, and $42.5B stashed overseas (per their most recent financials). As Savitz observes, there's a good chance some of that cash will be used on foreign acquisitions, especially in light of recent deals such as Microsoft/Skype and Cisco/NDS.

    | Nov. 7, 2012, 6:42 PM | 31 Comments
  • Oct. 19, 2012, 11:13 AM

    Microsoft (MSFT) is in talks to sell its Atlas display ad-serving/measurement business to private AppNexus, sources tell AdAge. There have already been reports Microsoft, whose Online Services unit just reported a $364M loss for FQ1, is thinking of exiting the online ad market, as it struggles to compete with Google. Microsoft took a $6.2B write-down related to its '07 purchase of online ad agency aQuantive this year, and its ad ops have seen major executive losses. (MSFT FQ1 results: I, II)

    | Oct. 19, 2012, 11:13 AM | 2 Comments
  • Oct. 17, 2012, 1:39 PM

    Microsoft (MSFT) has acquired MarketingPilot, a developer of marketing automation software, for an undisclosed sum. Microsoft plans to integrate MarketingPilot's products, currently aimed at marketing and ad agencies, with its Dynamics CRM software line. Eloqua (ELOQ) and ExactTarget (ET) are two providers of cloud-based marketing automation software. (StorSimple acquisition)

    | Oct. 17, 2012, 1:39 PM | 1 Comment
  • Oct. 16, 2012, 1:03 PM

    Microsoft (MSFT) is acquiring StorSimple, a developer of storage appliances and related software sporting advanced cloud backup capabilities. Though buying an enterprise hardware firm is off the beaten path for Microsoft, the purchase ties into its efforts to pitch its Azure platform as an ideal solution for "hybrid" cloud environments that support both locally-hosted ("private") and service provider-controlled ("public") cloud infrastructures. Many top rivals, such as Amazon and Salesforce, have a much stronger public cloud tilt.

    | Oct. 16, 2012, 1:03 PM | 1 Comment
  • Oct. 4, 2012, 1:40 PM

    Microsoft (MSFT) has acquired PhoneFactor, a provider of enterprise authentication services. Microsoft plans on integrating PhoneFactor's solutions, which act as an alternative to hardware-based security tokens, with its business apps and cloud services. Meanwhile, The Next Web reports Microsoft, currently getting ready to launch Xbox Music, is in talks to acquire online music service Rdio, which has been struggling to compete with Spotify.

    | Oct. 4, 2012, 1:40 PM | 1 Comment
  • Aug. 20, 2012, 12:21 AM
    After laying off the majority of its staff, cloud gaming service OnLive announces it has been sold to investment firm Lauder Partners in a deal that will wipe out existing equity (and perhaps trigger lawsuits). It's a major blow for a service many saw as a threat to Microsoft, Sony, and Nintendo's consoles, due to its ability to stream games to a variety of platforms. OnLive has struggled with high operating costs and competition from the Steam distribution service, which offers more titles. (Sony/Gaikai)
    | Aug. 20, 2012, 12:21 AM
  • Jul. 16, 2012, 3:29 AM

    NBC parent Comcast (CMCSA) has bought out Microsoft's (MSFT) 50% stake in, and has already rebranded the site as Financial terms weren't disclosed, but sources say the stake changed hands for ~$300M. (previously)

    | Jul. 16, 2012, 3:29 AM | 6 Comments
  • Jul. 9, 2012, 11:14 AM

    Microsoft (MSFT) is acquiring Perceptive Pixel, a developer of giant multi-touch display panels. Perceptive's tech, which can detect dozens of points of contact, will likely be used in Microsoft's PixelSense display tables, and also might have applications for Windows 8 tablets and all-in-one desktops. Separately, ZDNet reports Windows 8 will be released to OEMs by the first week of August (business users should get early access), with general availability arriving in late October.

    | Jul. 9, 2012, 11:14 AM | 5 Comments