Activist investor Carl Icahn has revealed he owns "hundreds of millions of dollars" in VMware shares, sparking rumours that he could be set to lock horns with Michael Dell once again.
Icahn and Dell clashed in 2013 when the investor tried unsuccessfully to stop Dell taking the company he founded private.
The feud could be set to reignite again, with Icahn revealing the size of his VMware investment as Dell Technologies considers a reorganisation of the group structure, which could see VMware and Dell merge.
Icahn squared up to Dell when confirming the news to CNBC, saying: "We're right there against Dell again, maybe.
"I say maybe because I hope he does the right thing and he pays a fair price for it.
"Nothing is obvious, but Dell has $42bn in debt and that is a lot for a third-world country, let alone Michael Dell. I think they're going to have to do some type of merger with VMware and it's a question of what you pay for it."
Icahn also briefly alluded to his previous clash with Dell, when he tried to block the deal which took Dell private because he didn't feel it valued the firm correctly.
"I do believe that Michael will pay the basically right price [in a potential VMware-Dell merger] and that we'll all be, shall I say in quotes, ‘on friendly terms'," he said.
"I said a few years ago that he didn't pay enough for Dell when he bought it - I believe I was right, we made some money on it - but I think we're back to the same situation. Hopefully it is going to work out well."
He also revealed that he had planned to buy further shares in VMware - and the Dell Technologies tracking stock - but that the stock "just got away from me".
Icahn was speaking just a few days after finally ousting the CEO from Xerox and blocking the print vendor's proposed merger with Fujifilm.
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