Dell prepares for antitrust settlement

June 15, 2010 | 10:12

Tags: #anti-competition #anti-competitive #antitrust #intel-antitrust #monopoly

Companies: #dell #intel

Box shifter Dell has found itself having to put aside a whopping $100 million reserve fund in its latest financial report in order to prepare itself for a possible anti-trust settlement.

According to a report over on Engadget, which quotes Dell's own Financial News page as its source, Dell's move comes as a result of fears that its collaboration with Intel - which saw Dell accept the chip giant's offered rebates in return for refusing to work with other CPU manufacturers including AMD - will come back to bite it in the behind.

With Intel having been fined by the EU and the FTC over its anti-competitive practices, it makes sense for Dell to put some money aside in case the company's competitors decide that the companies accepting the cash to exclude AMD and others from fairly competing should be punished in the same way as the company offering the 'rebates.'

Dell will now be left with a difficult choice: with the fund set aside, it has the opportunity to pre-empt an investigation into its actions by volunteering to pay restitution to those that it has wronged with its actions, which could save it an impressive amount of money in the long term. However, by admitting culpability it can kiss goodbye to the $100 million with no chance of defending itself or reducing the damages in an appeal situation - something that is unlikely to please investors.

Do you believe that Dell should be held culpable for its working with Intel to exclude rivals including AMD from the marketplace, or were its actions simply the result of trying to get the best possible margin for its shareholders and thus beyond reproach? Share your thoughts over in the forums.
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