NEW YORK — Power utility, the largest utility in the U.S., IBM, and other firms have agreed to buy rival Dell Inc. in a deal that would lead to more jobs and a bigger profit for customers.
The deal could lead other firms to follow suit and increase their share of the U-S.
electricity market, analysts said.
The deal would allow Dell to take a big chunk out of the pie for customers, according to Jeffrey Lefkowitz, a professor of electrical engineering at Princeton University.
It would also create jobs and boost Dell’s share of total U. S. electricity sales, he said.
“It would be a big deal for Dell,” Leflkowitz said.
“It would probably create a lot of new jobs and help to drive the overall economy.”
Dell is one of several big utilities that have bought rival companies in recent years.
In addition to the power companies, GEICO, which provides electric-power services to customers across the country, bought rival power-grid supplier PPL Corp. in December for $2.7 billion.
The transaction is expected to close in the second half of 2018.
Dish Network Corp., which has struggled with declining customer service and other issues, also bought rival company EMC Corp. for $1.8 billion in December.
In addition to its share of electricity sales from its power grid, Dell has long been a supplier to large corporations, including Boeing, IBM and General Electric.
In January, the U and Europe imposed sanctions on two major U.K. utilities over their alleged roles in manipulating prices for electricity, which was used to subsidize the construction of a new coal plant.
The move followed reports that the U.-K.
government and the European Union had imposed sanctions against two other power-company companies.
The move prompted the U., which is seeking a bailout from the European Central Bank, to launch a broader crackdown on the electricity sector.
The U.N. agency said on Friday that it was looking at sanctions against four other large companies in the electricity market.
Dell’s business model has long depended on large power companies purchasing its power, which is sold at wholesale prices.
That has left Dell vulnerable to high costs, particularly as more consumers move to electric vehicles, which use batteries to help drive more energy-efficient cars.
Since the power grid was established in the 1970s, Dell’s business has been largely unaffected by the rise of electric vehicles.
But a combination of increasing consumer demand for power and a glut of supply in the power sector is now pushing the company into higher costs, analysts say.
At the same time, Dell is struggling to attract qualified employees to its electric-vehicle business, which relies on workers to install and repair electric-grid equipment.
In its annual report, Dell said it was unable to hire nearly a third of its workforce to do work related to electric vehicle and battery-power technology.
Its shares have declined 17 percent this year, after recovering from their worst slide in years.
Last year, the company reported a profit of $1 billion on revenue of $5.9 billion, but analysts expected the revenue to fall well short of $6 billion.
Its shares fell nearly 1 percent Thursday.