Dell CFO Reluctantly Accepts Public Disclosures With EMC Deal

Dell Inc. went private partly to escape the glare of being a public company as it revamps to focus on selling to big enterprises.

That didn’t last long. Now, the computer maker said it’s preparing to report financial results after it completes its $67 billion acquisition of EMC Corp. -- an unwanted, but needed concession, according to Chief Financial Officer Tom Sweet.

"We needed to get the deal financed," Sweet said in an interview at a Dell conference in Austin, Texas. "We think in the long run it’s a reasonable trade-off to get the deal done."

Attendees visit the Reconnect Program booth during the 2015 Dell World Conference in Austin, Texas, U.S.

Photographer: Matthew Busch/Bloomberg

Dell, which went private in 2013, will file quarterly reports after closing its acquisition of EMC, expected next year. The numbers will be made public because of the agreement’s structure, which includes a tracking stock for EMC’s holdings in VMware Inc., a publicly traded company. That tracking stock was a key financing element in the massive deal for the storage maker, the CFO said.

The Dell-EMC combination, the biggest on record in the tech sector, will create a leading provider of the gear used in corporate data centers around the world, including servers and storage hardware. The merged company will be run by Michael Dell, the chief executive officer of the company he founded and took private for about $25 billion. Dell is financing the takeover with his investment vehicle, Silver Lake and Singapore state-owned investment company Temasek Holdings.

Dell has said that being private gives the company greater flexibility. Even so, it has provided updates to bond holders on a quarterly basis. But those numbers have been kept out of the public eye because of non-disclosure agreements, Sweet said.

Public disclosure is required of the tracking stock in VMware, which provides software that helps manage servers.

"It was a way to retain the control EMC had in VMware," Sweet said.

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