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Dell Ex-CEO Rollins to get $48 million cash

Might be hard to break a $10,000,000

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Former Dell CEO Kevin Rollins will be making bank after all.

Despite receiving a pyrite parachute of a severance package to the tune of $5m, the ex-executive will receive an additional $48.5m in expired stock options that have been frozen because of an accounting investigation.

Rollins, however, will have to tuck himself in for a while before the stock option fairy leaves the money under his pillow. A regulatory filing Wednesday reveals the cash is on the way, but it won't arrive until Dell can post its annual earnings report for the 2007 fiscal year. Currently, no timetable has been set.

The $48.5m represents 7.37 million shares that were vested before Rollins announced his departure in January. Although under normal conditions Rollins could exercise his options 90 days after he left, the company couldn't let him cash out because it was under investigation by the Securities and Exchange Commission for alleged accounting shenanigans. During the wait, the options expired.

But Dell is feeling generous, and has inked a deal to pay Rollins the $48.5m, which represents the average price of Dell shares the week before Rollins' options started pushing up daisies.

Rollins helmed Dell through tempestuous waters since he took over the CEO gig from founder Michael Dell in 2004. The company lost its lead in PC sales to HP, its server market growth withered, it fell behind in processor technology, was hit with an accounting probe, earned a reputation for bad customer support and watched its share prices plummet. Although founder Dell stuck by Rollins through the thick of it, in February he was curtly shown the door and announced his departure.

Since then, Rollins has taken a new job at private equity group TPG Capital to head up the technology arm of the business. ®

The smart choice: opportunity from uncertainty

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