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Bidder backs out of Dell deal

NEW YORK (AP) - There appears to be one less bidder pursuing an acquisition of slumping personal computer maker Dell.

The Wall Street Journal reports that the Blackstone Group has retreated from its plans to submit an offer to buy most of Dell Inc.'s outstanding stock for $14.25 per share. The newspaper cited unnamed people familiar with the matter in a story posted on its website late Thursday.

Blackstone made a preliminary proposal late last month as an alternate to Dell's agreement to sell itself to CEO Michael Dell and Silver Lake Partners for $24.4 billion. That worked out to $13.65 per share, a price some Dell stockholders felt was too low.

Blackstone didn't immediately respond to calls seeking comment Thursday night.

Billionaire investor Carl Icahn also has proposed buying a controlling stake in Dell.

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