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Dell to acquire family-controlled Perot Systems for $3.9 billion

Dell Inc is to acquire Perot Systems Corp, the family-controlled computer services provider, in a deal worth $3.9 billion, the two companies announced yesterday.

The Perot family stands to make up to $400 million from the sale of the US-based company founded in 1988 by Ross Perot Sr (pictured). HWGA Ltd, the holding company of the Perot family, owns around 25% of the business and the family control a further 2% of shares through family trusts.

Second generation Ross Perot Jr, chairman of the Perot Systems board, said: "This transaction represents a great opportunity for our company and our associates. When my father founded Perot Systems he envisioned a global information-technology leader. The new, larger Dell builds on that promise and its own successes by taking Perot Systems' expertise to more customers than ever."

Dell was keen to acquire the computer services provider in order to continue to grow its market share. Dell founder, chief executive and chairman of the board Michael Dell said: "We consider Perot Systems to be a premium asset with great people that enhances our opportunities for immediate and long-term growth."

Perot Systems' non-family chief executive Peter Altabef will continue to lead the business, which will become Dell's services unit. The statement released by both companies said it expected Dell directors to consider Perot Jr for the Dell board.

This is the second successful IT business founded by Perot Sr, 79, who is worth an estimated $5 billion. In 1962 he started Electronic Data Systems Corp, which he sold to General Motors in 1984. Hewlett-Packard purchased EDS from GM last year for $13.2 billion. Perot Sr is also involved in politics and ran for US president in 1992 and 1996.

Perot Systems is based in Plano, Texas and recorded 2008 revenues of $2.8 billion.

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