Microsoft Threatens To Walk Out on Yahoo
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Yahoo has to move off the dime by Saturday or else Microsoft could try taking the place by force, lowering its rejected $31-a-share bid in the process – or scarier still for Yahoo – Microsoft could walk away completely, a move that will send Yahoo stock back to the teens and could be the undoing of Yahoo’s desperate CEO Jerry Yang.
Microsoft was unmoved by the slightly better-than-expected results Yahoo posted Tuesday – and Yang’s claim that the numbers prove Yahoo is worth more – to offer more money. It said it would stick by its price.
He also said that Microsoft “is prepared to move forward
alone without Yahoo.”
“Time is money,” he said later. “We made [that] clear in the
last letter we sent,” meaning his ultimatum.
Analysts think Ballmer is merely posturing. They also tend
to think that Yahoo is unlikely to get much of a sweetener out of
In its ultimatum three weeks ago, Ballmer told Yahoo that he
was prepared to wage a proxy fight to unseat its board, an effort that could
take a long time and give Google the liberty to forge ahead.
Yahoo’s earnings were flat with last year except for a windfall
one-time non-cash gain of $401 million stemming its stake in the parent company
of Alibaba.com, the big Chinese e-commerce site that went public late last
Revenues in the quarter were up 9% to $1.82 billion, $1.35
billion, if you subtract the commissions it pays to partners. Funny number
that. Google earned $1.3 billion in Q1.
Yahoo left its disappointing 2008 revenue prediction unchanged at $7.2 billion-$8 billion.
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