Yahoo, Microsoft game of chicken continues

April 1, 2008

ballmerwait2.jpgDeal brinksmanship or genuine threat? You be the judge.

The Wall Street Journal and Reuters reported on Tuesday that Microsoft has no intention of raising its bid to buy Yahoo beyond its initial offer of $31 per share in late January. And why would they, given that no credible counter offer has materialized.

Despite Yahoo co-founder Jerry Yang’s best efforts to court News Corp and AOL, and a road show with investors to talk up Yahoo’s future, most believe the deal remains Microsoft’s to lose.

Who are the winners in this long drawn out fight? Neither, Silicon Alley Insider’s Henry Blodget suggests. In this industry, the longer you wait, the further you trail.
(Reuters) (WSJ)

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Despite a report in Tuesday’s Wall Street Journal claiming that talks had broken off over the proposed buyout, Microsoft Corp and Yahoo! Inc could still be conducting back-channel negotiations in order to resolve their differences. The Journal suggests that while Microsoft will tenaciously adhere to its initial bid of $44.6 billion, it will be prepared “to lay a long siege” against Yahoo until the California company relents and accepts the software titan’s original offer. “While speculation has swirled that Microsoft was poised to raise its bid, Microsoft is instead biding its time. The software giant likely hopes to use the potential of a sweetened offer to lure Yahoo into serious discussions. So far the two sides have only had one meeting,” The Journal said in the article. Yet this report discounts the notion that behind-the-scenes talks among the two companies’ Directors could be ongoing.