Michael returns to lead Dell

Michael Dell, 41, who established Dell Computers in 1984 while at college, is returning to lead the firm as chief executive replacing his own successor Kevin Rollins, who is leaving the firm with immediate effect.

Dell left the top job in the firm in 2004, though he stayed on as chairman, a position he will retain during his second stint as CEO.

Dell founded the company with $1,000 and an untried idea in the computer trade - to bypass the middleman and sell computer systems directly to the customer, pioneering his 'direct model'.

Dell's direct sales model, which allows business and consumers to buy equipment directly from the computer maker, turned it into a leading computer manufacturer and a Wall Street powerhouse with successive successful earnings announcements. In 1992, Dell became the youngest CEO ever of a Fortune 500 company.

In recent years, however, Dell has been hurt by a glut of low-cost, low-profit PCs and weaker-than-anticipated sales of its pricier, more lucrative desktops and notebooks.

"The Board believes that Michael's vision and leadership are critical to building Dell's leadership in the technology industry for the long-term," said Samuel A Nunn, presiding director of Dell's Board. "There is no better person in the world to run Dell at this time than the man who created the 'direct model' and who has built this company over the last 23 years."