Yahoo – jilted lover or masterful tactician?

May 6, 2008

yang-photo.jpgYahoo Chief Jerry Yang is leaving the door open to Microsoft, he tells us. In an interview with Reuters’ Michele Gershberg, Yang says he had been seeking common ground when Microsoft abruptly ended deal talks.

Yang: “We were negotiating a way to find common ground and then on Saturday they chose to walk away.”

Asked if they’re up for more from Microsoft, Yang says, “If they have anything new to say, we would be open … I am more than willing to listen.”

Is this a cover-our-butts move in the event they face shareholder lawsuits or is it a candid appeal to Microsoft to come back to the table?

Separately, sources are telegraphing that a final agreement between Google and Yahoo has not been reached as they discuss a potential deal with regulators. They also say any potential deal with Yahoo would not be prohibitive to Yahoo striking other agreements down the line. The move appears to be Google’s attempt at playing both sides — offering a carrot to Yahoo, while appeasing regulators.

The intrigue builds …


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seems most likely that after Yahoo’s stock drops now that their management has clearly demonstrated their incompetence and/or ignorance of their duty to shareholders, MS will come back and buy Yahoo for under $30/share. Yang will personally lose over a billion dollars from the $33/share price and go down in history as one of the best innovators ever with the worst business sense of all time.

Posted by jimmy slim | Report as abusive

You never know which way the wind bow in a high profiling deal such as this one. While Terry Yang indeed did what he claimed to get more out of Microsoft or he’s trying to cover his own butt. Either way this will go down to the history book and we would never know for sure.

I think Microsoft will come back at $34 if not higher. Yang takes it. Case over.

Posted by NoWhereNear | Report as abusive

Sometimes you have to be prepared to walk away from a deal in order to get the deal you want.

Posted by Yeshua | Report as abusive

I think that Microsoft needs Yahoo for a lot more than $33/share, although that might be all that Yahoo is worth. Perhaps Yang’s really saying:

“Look Steve (Balmer), I know we’re only worth $33, but that’s based on external measures. We’re worth a lot more than that to you so you can save the company – what with Vista, no real Internet-app story, and a flailing consumer presence with MSN. Come on, pay the money and stop trying to get a great deal. You bought that damned web analytics company for a far higher multiple, what with going cheap with us?”

Posted by Nic Fulton | Report as abusive