HP Raises Stakes Again, Increases 3Par Offer to $30 A Share

This is getting ridiculous.

Less than two hours after Dell officially raised its offer for 3Par, HP stormed back and raised its bid to $30 a share or $2 billion.

Dell had matched HP's previous offer for 3Par -- $27 a share or $1.8 billion -- Friday morning. But HP wasted little time in responding to Dell's newest offer by increasing its own offer by $3 a share.

"HP today announced that it has increased its proposal to acquire all of the outstanding shares of 3PAR Inc. to $30 per share in cash, or an enterprise value of $2.0 billion," HP said in a press statement. "The proposal represents an 11 percent premium above the most recent price offered by Dell Inc. of $27 per share. HP's proposal is not subject to any financing contingency and has been approved by HP's board of directors. Once approved by 3PAR's board, HP expects the transaction to close by the end of the calendar year."

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Friday's news followed several days of intense competition between rival computer makers HP and Dell. Last week Dell announced its intention to acquire 3Par, a storage virtualization company, for $1.15 billion, but by Monday HP crashed Dell's party and offered $1.6 billion for 3Par.

Not to be outdone by HP, Dell upped its offer to $24.30 a share on Thursday. But the victory didn't last long; HP undercut Dell once again with a higher offer of $27 a share. Meanwhile, 3Par's stock price jumped approximately 20 percent to more than $31 per share Friday morning as the bidding war heated up.