Dell has announced a $24 billion deal to go private, partly financed by Microsoft.
The computer giant said the deal would be led by its founder, Michael Dell, and the investment firm Silver Leak. MSD Capital will also provide funds, and Microsoft will contribute a $2 billion loan.
The Wall Street Journal said that Michael Dell was "increasingly worried about his legacy" after the company lost more than a third of its value in 2012.
The buyers' consortium will pay $13.65 a share for the company - a 25% premium.
The New York Times claimed it was the biggest leveraged buyout since the financial crisis of 2008.
Dell's board is thought to have voted on the deal on Monday evening.
It is a dramatic attempt to try and turn around the company, which has struggled consistently amid a wider downturn in the sale of PCs and laptops.
It is hoped that without pressure from shareholders the company will be able to more effectively transition its business into a new era.
In a statement Michael Dell said:
"I believe this transaction will open an exciting new chapter for Dell, our customers and team members. We can deliver immediate value to stockholders, while we continue the execution of our long-term strategy and focus on delivering best-in-class solutions to our customers as a private enterprise.
Dell has made solid progress executing this strategy over the past four years, but we recognize 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, a world-class investor with an outstanding reputation. We are committed to delivering an unmatched customer experience and excited to pursue the path ahead."
In a separate statement Microsoft said:
"Microsoft has provided a $2 billion loan to the group that has proposed to take Dell private. Microsoft is committed to the long term success of the entire PC ecosystem and invests heavily in a variety of ways to build that ecosystem for the future.
“We're in an industry that is constantly evolving. As always, we will continue to look for opportunities to support partners who are committed to innovating and driving business for their devices and services built on the Microsoft platform."
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