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Dell to tweak name to fit new identity

Dell Computer's board wants to make it just plain Dell to reflect a shift from PC seller to dealer in a broad range of products, including services. Also: Execs' salaries revealed.

It's just Dell.

In a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission on Monday, Dell Computer's board of directors revealed that it wants to change the company's name.

The board feels that changing the name from Dell Computer Corp. to Dell Inc. will better reflect the Round Rock, Texas-based company's recent transition from a focus on selling mainly desktop and notebook PCs to a strategy based on a broader product line that includes servers, storage, services and other products.

Changing the name "represents Dell's evolution from strictly a computer hardware company to a diverse supplier of technology products and services," the board said in a preliminary proxy form. "In addition, recognition of the Dell brand has grown so that the company is commonly known simply as Dell. The change of the name to Dell Inc. more closely aligns our formal corporate name with our brand."

It's not uncommon for companies to change names to reflect their changing place in the market. Gateway, for example, has gone through several different corporate identities, including a change that dropped its old Gateway 2000 moniker just before the beginning of the year 2000.

Dell will ask its shareholders to approve the change during its annual shareholder meeting, scheduled for July 18, in Austin, Texas.

Executive pay
Dell's board also revealed the fiscal 2003 salaries of the company's top employees, including CEO Michael Dell.

The company's top executive made $950,000 in salary and nearly $2.5 million in bonus pay during the fiscal year. He also received options for 500,000 shares. Dell earned $925,962 in salary in fiscal 2002, and his bonus totaled about $347,236, the company said in a filing.

Kevin Rollins, Dell's president, received $770,962 in salary and a bonus of just more than $2 million in fiscal 2003. He also received 500,000 options. Rollins made $721,154 in salary and $243,389 in bonuses in fiscal 2002.

Dell's top three senior vice presidents, including Paul Bell, Joe Marengi and Rosendo Parra, each made $472,115 in fiscal 2003 with bonuses of $699,422 and grants of 200,000 stock options. Bell, who runs Dell Europe, Middle East and Africa, received an additional $748,623 for living expenses and tax equalization. Marengi and Parra are senior vice presidents in Dell's Americas business.

The three executives each made between $435,000 to $444,000 in salary and $189,000 in bonuses in fiscal 2002.

A Dell committee determines executive bonuses by using a formula based on the company's consolidated net income. It then assigns an annual performance target for each executive officer.

Dell will adopt a new long-term cash bonus incentive program that will grant additional yearly bonuses to top executives that range from 150 percent of base salary in fiscal 2004 to as much as 300 percent of base salary in fiscal 2007, if the company meets certain goals for each of those four years.

CNET News.com's Ian Fried contributed to this report.