Dell has unveiled plans to go private in a $US24.4 billion ($A23.51 billion) deal, giving founder Michael Dell a chance to reshape the former No.1 PC maker away from the spotlight of Wall Street.
"I believe this transaction will open an exciting new chapter for Dell, our customers and team members," Michael Dell said on Tuesday in unveiling the deal with equity investment firm Silver Lake, and backed by a $US2 billion ($A1.93 billion) loan from Microsoft.
The company said it had signed "a definitive" agreement to give shareholders $US13.65 ($A13.15) per share in cash -- a premium of 25 per cent over Dell's closing share price on January 11, before reports of the deal circulated.
The move, which would delist the company from stock markets, could ease some pressure on Dell, which is cash-rich but has seen profits slump, as it tries to reduce dependence on the slumping market for personal computers.
The plan is subject to several conditions, including a vote of unaffiliated stockholders.
It calls for a "go shop" period to allow shareholders to seek a better offer.
The company founder said Dell has made progress in its turnaround strategy "but we recognise that it will still take more time, investment and patience, and I believe our efforts will be better supported by partnering with Silver Lake in our shared vision."
"I am committed to this journey and I have put a substantial amount of my own capital at risk together with Silver Lake."
Under terms of the deal, Michael Dell, who currently owns some 14 per cent of Dell's common shares, would remain chairman and chief executive and boost his stake with "a substantial additional cash investment," a company statement said.
Additional cash for the deal will come from Silver Lake, a major tech investment group, and MSD Capital, a fund created to manage Michael Dell's investments.
Analysts have said the deal may give the company a chance to regain some footing in a market in which smartphones and tablets are overtaking laptop and desktop computers.