A sharp-eyed industry analyst has spotted that cloudy virtualisation biz VMware's SEC filings mention the words “spin-off”. What's going on here?
Aaron Rakers, the MD of analyst house Stifel Nicolaus, picked up the following sentence in VMware’s November 2013 SEC Form 10-Q filing:
…that for as long as EMC or its successor-in-interest continues to own greater than 50% of the voting control of the company’s outstanding common stock, we will not knowingly take or fail to take any action that could reasonably be expected to preclude EMC or its successor-in-interest’s ability to undertake a tax-free spin-off.
Rakers comes at this from the angle that EMC shares are under-valued, and spinning off VMware could unlock EMC’s storage business (Information Infrastructure) valuation.
EMC owns some 80 per cent of VMware shares, following the $635m acquisition in 2003. Our reading is that any spin-off is unlikely while Joe Tucci runs the EMC ship.
On the other hand, what a wondrous leaving present for EMC shareholders this could be if Tucci wants to go out with an atom bomb-sized bang. ®