Dell plans offer to top HP’s for 3Par

By Reuters
Posted Aug. 25, 2010 at 12:52 p.m.

Dell Inc. is planning to submit a more competitive bid for data storage firm 3Par Inc., challenging Hewlett-Packard Co.’s offer of $24 per share, a source familiar with the talks said Wednesday.

The source said Dell’s new bid was likely to be more “competitive” than HP’s last offer of $1.6 billion, but declined to comment on how much higher its bid would be.
A Dell spokesman declined to comment on the negotiations.

3Par said Tuesday that it will start merger talks with HP after HP’s offer topped Dell’s previous $1.15 billion bid.

If 3Par’s board endorses HP’s bid, it would give Dell three business days to sweeten its offer. 3Par said in a filing Tuesday that it had not yet made such a decision.

A Reuters survey of nine fund managers and analysts Tuesday found that most expect another bid or two, and a final price of about $29 per share.

The pursuit of 3Par comes as technology firms vie to sell a wider array of products and services and invest in new technologies such asĀ  cloud computing.

Some analysts have said that HP’s latest bid is too high and that Dell might walk away.

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