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Dell has said it will continue to help channel partners finance deals,
despite the announcement that the firm may potentially be looking to sell off
its Dell Financial Services arm.

Dell said it has hired a major investment bank to help it undertake a six-month
strategic review of its finance unit to determine the best structure and
capabilities of Dell Financial Services.

“This may mean alternative ownership or operating structure,” said David
Frink, a Dell spokesperson.  “We are committed to financing in the channel
and will be providing this now and for the long term.”

Frink said that this is simply “an opportunity to find a long-term partner
to expand its financial offerings and investment or other structural changes,”
but that it is too early to tell what any outcome could be. 

Dell Financial Services currently provides loans, leases and credit to end users
and channel partners. 

Back in December the
PC giant bought back a 30 percent stake in Dell Financial Services held by CIT
.
Frink said the firm was contractually obliged to do this, but also believed
sole ownership of its financial services arm was necessary to give the firm
more freedom to consider its options. 

At the time Dell said the buyback could lead to more tailored finance
programs for the channel, although details have yet to be forthcoming.

The vendor also announced that it plans to close its PC plant in Austin,
Texas, with the loss of 900 jobs, as it strives to meet its goal of cutting its
global work force by 10 percent‚ÄĒaround  8,800 people‚ÄĒand cut expenses by $3
billion within the next three years.

The news comes just days before the vendor’s analyst meeting on April 2 and
3 in Round Rock, Texas, where it will discuss its five strategic priorities‚ÄĒconsumer,
enterprise, notebooks, small and medium enterprise, and emerging countries‚ÄĒalong
with its financial model.