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Archive for September 25th, 2009

As the economic slump is fading off, tech titans have amassed cash for possible takeovers. Here is an opionion further explaining this from 24/7 Wall Street Blog.

“The economy is obviously getting better, so long as you are not one of the unemployed or about to lose your job.  Now with more than a 50% rally from the March lows and a Dow Jones Industrial Average challenging the 10,000 level, suddenly everyone wants to put on their investment banker hats again and look for buyers and buyout candidates after deals are announced.  This week’s Dell Inc. (NASDAQ: DELL) deal for Perot Systems Corp. (NASDAQ: PER) was a $3.9 billion acquisition versus $12.7 billion in cash and equivalents held at the end of the quarter.  The Oracle Corp. (NASDAQ: ORCL) deal for Sun Microsystems Inc. (NASDAQ: JAVA) is valued at $7.4 billion, or $5.6 billion net of Sun’s cash and debt.  We went back through our list from September 2, 2009 where we noted that outside of the financials  in the 20 largest US companies had a cash hoard of $335 billion that could be used for mergers and acquisitions, and that is not accounting for lines of credit, stock or debt that could be sold, and other means of financing a deal.  While nowhere near all of the cash will ever be used, many companies could pay big dividends before any tax changes.

So we wanted to look through the technology sector and after we looked through the top 100 markets caps in our 24/7 Wall St. Real-Time 500 we added a few new additions in the tech sector that still had over $5 billion in cash.  Out if the $335 billion from those in the top twenty, we broke out Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ: MSFT), International Business Machines (NYSE: IBM), Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL), Google Inc. (NASDAQ: GOOG), Cisco Systems Inc. (NASDAQ: CSCO), Intel Corp. (NASDAQ: INTC), Oracle Corp. (NASDAQ: ORCL).  Even after a huge rally, $335 billion and then some could go a very long way for strategic and bolt-on acquisitions as a positioning strategy for the next decade.  Now, going further down the list of the top 100 companies with $5 billion or more in cash from tech companies alone adds in Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE: HPQ), QUALCOMM Inc. (NASDAQ: QCOM), EMC Corporation (NYSE: EMC), and Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ: YHOO). When we tally up all the cash, there is over $260 billion available from these few tech companies that could be deployed for mergers, acquisitions, or the good old dividends.  Again, that is before tallying up credit lines, factoring, debt sales, and other financing methods.

Hewlett-Packard Company (NYSE: HPQ) had almost $25 billion in cash and long-term investments.  Now that it has migrated away from just selling PCs and printers, we think that there will be a rather long lull before H-P tries to match its big buyout of EDS even if Dell is tip-toeing into IT-services and consulting with Perot.  But in the end, what we think may not matter.  Nearly $25 billion in cash when you know you will be profitable ahead leaves a lot of room to go out make purchases.

QUALCOMM Inc. (NASDAQ: QCOM) was the 29th largest company as of Wednesday with a $74.12 billion market cap. If you tally up its cash, short-term and long-term investments, it is sitting on almost $15 billion in cash and equivalents as of last quarter.  After all the lawsuits that the Jacobs team are settled, it might consider a way to deploy capital to get around future patent cases.  If only it was possible, although anything is possible.”

Read the full article here.

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