Microsoft's patchy investment history

Microsoft is forking out $US2 billion to lend Michael Dell a hand to buy back his company. It's the latest in a number of major investments made by the company in its 37-year history and here's what its track record looks like.

Microsoft has agreed to lend $US2 billion to Michael Dell and private equity firm Silver Lake to help finance their move to take PC maker Dell Inc private.

The world's largest software maker has invested in or bought hundreds of tech companies in its 37-year history, but returns have been patchy.

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