According to the Wall Street Journal (via CNBC), Dell will report fiscal first quarter revenue of $14 billion, higher than the $13.5 billion that was expected. However, the firm’s earnings per share were dramatically weak, coming in on a non-GAAP basis at $0.20, under the expected $0.35.

For context, in the preceeding fourth quarter, Dell had revenue of $14.3 billion, and earnings per share – non-GAAP – of $0.40. In regular trading, Dell is down around 0.6 percent. However, given that an offer to buy the company’s shares at a price of $13.65 exists, the price is all but pegged to that figure.

That explains why, even with a dramatic miss regarding its earnings per share, Dell’s stock might not fall as far as you might expect.

Dell is in the process of going private. When Michael Dell and Silverlake announced their intention to take the storied computer manufacturer off the public markets, rival shareholders complained that the price was too low. However, following rough financial performance and a shrinking PC market, bids have fallen away.

However, recently, a new offer for Dell was floated. As TNW’s Jon Russell reported:

Dell shareholders Carl Icahn and Southeastern Asset Management has clubbed together to propose an alternative solution to the buyout of the computer firm. [T]he sides are collaborating to propose a $12 per share cash and finance deal to buy the remainder of Dell. The two sides that the deal would guarantee the company’s debt. Southeastern Asset Management owns 8.5 percent of the company, while Icahn’s stake is 4.6 percent.

The weak earnings figure might help Michael Dell prove that his offer isn’t too low, but the better than expected revenue figure might dictate the opposite to his opponents.

Top Image Credit: Steve Snodgrass