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Shareholder Backs Yahoo!, Supports Independence

Zonk posted more than 6 years ago | from the settle-back-folks-going-to-take-a-while dept.

Businesses 149

mikkl666 writes "In a follow-up to yesterday's story about the struggle between Microsoft and Yahoo!, major Yahoo! shareholder Legg Mason has announced that they are ready to back the company in their effort to keep out of Microsoft's grip. According to portfolio manager Bill Miller, 'the problem is Microsoft blundered with the letter this weekend. Telling the shareholders you're going to take something away from them is not a way to get their support'. Nevertheless, he believes Microsoft will end up paying what it takes to own Yahoo."

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149 comments

Bummer (5, Funny)

garett_spencley (193892) | more than 6 years ago | (#23015620)

So no Yahoo! logo dressed up as a borg then ? :(

Re:Bummer (3, Funny)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 6 years ago | (#23015660)

I was kinda looking forward to their new slogan:

"Where do you want to Yahoo today?"

Re:Bummer (1)

Captain Splendid (673276) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016384)

Where do you want to Yahoo today?

Are you Serious?

Re:Bummer (1)

ardle (523599) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016740)

Are you Serious?
No he isn't: stop calling him Serious.

What is MS hoping to gain exactly? (4, Insightful)

jfbilodeau (931293) | more than 6 years ago | (#23015700)

Is it just me, or is there only chaos and mayhem in store if MS tries to merge with Yahoo? They are two incompatible business and I can't see what MS would gain from their multi-billion dollars 'investment'. Why does IBM & Lotus come to mind right now?

Re:What is MS hoping to gain exactly? (2, Insightful)

Amouth (879122) | more than 6 years ago | (#23015732)

i doubt i would consider it a "merge" of the compaines.. i doubht MS would ever really merge.. they would buy and then partion it out and let it rot..

unless MS is don't noting but tasking a couple of spare MS people to throw out crazy offers at yahoo to cause PR and basicly make yahoo lose concentration as a company on what it is they should be doing..

trust me when you work for a large company and there is a rummor of a buyout no one gets anything done really..

i could see MS doing this.. why i don't know.. but it makes more sence then them wanting any IP yahoo has..

Re:What is MS hoping to gain exactly? (4, Insightful)

zappepcs (820751) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016050)

1 - embrace, extend
2 - send threatening letter
3 - lose shareholder support
4 - throw chairs
5 - remove legislator funding to pay off shareholders
6 - merge companies
7 - lay off good workers who have not yet left
8 - pay millions to change logos, make announcements
9 - pay off MSN staff
10 ...
11 profit!^H^H^H^H^H Watch Google grow exponentially

Re:What is MS hoping to gain exactly? (5, Interesting)

explosivejared (1186049) | more than 6 years ago | (#23015742)

Is it just me, or is there only chaos and mayhem in store if MS tries to merge with Yahoo?

Well that's what everyone around here is hoping. As for the other part of your post, this has nothing to do with technology. It has to do with market positioning and mind share. Microsoft wants to consolidate the online Yahoo! brand, which has a big following, with the MSN brand, which has had mixed results. This consolidation, in Microsoft's mind, will prime them for competition with Google.

If Microsoft aquires yahoo, then you can be sure that all of yahoo's open source stuff will be buried unceremoniously. So from a technical standpoint, it probably is a nightmare for yahoo, but, again, this isn't about technology. It's all about marketing.

Re:What is MS hoping to gain exactly? (1)

devjj (956776) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016020)

I would go one further and say it isn't about technology or marketing, but rather established mindshare. If it were solely about marketing it would be Microsoft trying to get Yahoo! in order to attract more people. What it's really about is Microsoft buying customers. They don't have to win anyone over if they buy the thing lock, stock, and barrell. What Microsoft isn't taking into account is the number of people who will jump ship when that happens. Many people will live on principle alone.

Re:What is MS hoping to gain exactly? (2)

Captain Splendid (673276) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016480)

Many people will live on principle alone.

That sure is some good crack you're smoking. I would have accepted some, but many? Many is the amount of people who won't even notice when MS buys out Yahoo.

Re:What is MS hoping to gain exactly? (1)

Original Replica (908688) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016652)

the amount of people who won't even notice when MS buys out Yahoo.

That number of people is steadily shrinking as Yahoo fights for independence. i think they should have a marketing campaign boasting about their fight against a MS buyout. They will automatically be the good guy because everyone knows that a corporate takeover, lots of people loose their jobs, and the job market is already so shaky that MS can't help but look like greedy evil bastards in the public eye.

Re:What is MS hoping to gain exactly? (1)

ardle (523599) | more than 6 years ago | (#23017426)

Good point: it's not a good time to be making people redundant. Good time to be working for MicroSoft!

Re:What is MS hoping to gain exactly? (1)

devjj (956776) | more than 6 years ago | (#23017040)

Tell that to the people who use flickr.

Re:What is MS hoping to gain exactly? (1)

hostyle (773991) | more than 6 years ago | (#23017442)

Are these different to the people who left when Yahoo! bought Flickr? Or did those people leave, come back again, and are now set to cause a big ya-hoopla yet again!

Re:What is MS hoping to gain exactly? (2, Interesting)

peragrin (659227) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016024)

That's the point actually MSFT has a horrible track record when it comes to actually using purchases. MSFT will abuse Yahoo until it no longer exists, change it, mold it until it looks like Windows Live and Hotmail.

The only thing Yahoo has that MSFT wants is customers for their online services. If MSFT wants customers it should try competing for them in an open market place instead of just trying to buy them.

Re:What is MS hoping to gain exactly? (0, Offtopic)

gnuman99 (746007) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016136)

WiX is OpenSource and sponsored by Microsoft.

see http://wix.sf.net

But they may not want to offer open source that directly conflicts with their business interest. But that is common sense now.

Re:What is MS hoping to gain exactly? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23016752)

So, you're saying that MS will continue to throw cash at FreeBSD the way Yahoo does?

Re:What is MS hoping to gain exactly? (1)

10101001 10101001 (732688) | more than 6 years ago | (#23017948)

As for the other part of your post, this has nothing to do with technology. It has to do with market positioning and mind share. Microsoft wants to consolidate the online Yahoo! brand, which has a big following, with the MSN brand, which has had mixed results. This consolidation, in Microsoft's mind, will prime them for competition with Google.

Microsoft trying to buy out Yahoo! for "mind share" is like at the early adoption of the automobile, a major horse and buggy owner trying to buy out GM to try to continue to sell their wares. Truthfully, I don't a lot of "brand recognition" really exists. Or, more precisely, I don't think people are so apt to stick with a mediocre product indefinitly based on brand when it comes to free internet services.

Why? Because they're *free* internet services. You can use one or another service, and merely the one you favor/use more becomes the instrinsic leader. Without a lock-in, and there's no real simple way to create a rather permanent lock-in (look at how the instant messanger lock-in went), it's a constant battle. In short, the only way for Microsoft to maintain market share with Yahoo! after buying it will be to have a very hands-off approach. But, that goes very much against the intended plans of *having* the large market share (it's simply how Microsoft has learned to operate).

Or, in short, either Yahoo! will be killed by Microsoft through their connivings..or their buying Yahoo! will be a financial waste (I think they'd like the constant revenue stream, but without any realistic hope of getting it near the levels of MS Windows or MS Office profit, I think they'd consider it an abortive deal (a la AOL and Time Warner)).

PS - It's the mind share of MS (and technology has a lot to do with it, not because open source is necessarily superior but because of the unwillingness of MS to take the ready tool for the job (because "it's not made by Microsoft", a control obsession)) because that has to change to be poised to compete against Google. Simply buying the mind share of Yahoo! will poison it against Yahoo! (which would be great for MS if Yahoo! was a separate company at that time), leading even *more* people to Google.

Re:What is MS hoping to gain exactly? (1)

erroneus (253617) | more than 6 years ago | (#23015744)

I think that since Microsoft has failed so miserably to enter into the "Internet Market Place" with MSN, they would like to try again by buying an established, more successful entity.

What Yahoo! and most people who actually like Yahoo! fear is that Microsoft will buy Yahoo! then screw it up the way it has done with so many other endeavors such as Hotmail.com. And let's face it, for those who pay attention to Microsoft's reputation for success in new markets, it's an almost certainty that Microsoft will fail with this... but who knows... Doom was predicted for the XBox and with a single game, Halo, they have managed to maintain that activity for a long time and for a long time in the future.

Re:What is MS hoping to gain exactly? (1)

Jason Earl (1894) | more than 6 years ago | (#23017464)

Microsoft has lost billions of dollars on the XBox, and losses continue to mount. Worse, the original XBox played a distant second to the PS2 and it appears that the XBox360 will be upstaged by the Wii. Microsoft's investors don't think that the XBox is a success.

Re:What is MS hoping to gain exactly? (2, Interesting)

ColdWetDog (752185) | more than 6 years ago | (#23015760)

What MS is hoping to gain has been extensively reported. Mostly it's an attempt to compete with Ballmer's Worst Nightmare - Google. What I find interesting is that a major stock holder who is presumably emotionally unattached from all the yapping and barking doesn't think it's such a good idea.

(Legg Mason is a large Asset Management Firm [wikipedia.org] ).

Methinks the world in general would be better served if Mr. Ballmer upped his medication dose.

Re:What is MS hoping to gain exactly? (3, Insightful)

UnknowingFool (672806) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016074)

Yes there will be chaos. Many people like myself can see major problems in the merger.

The first being the technologies. Yahoo tries to be platform agnostic. They use whatever works best and is cheapest. Right now they support a lot of BSD projects. Microsoft mandates Windows. The conversion of hotmail years back was a major hassle for MS. That was just one system. Yahoo is much larger than that. That conversion will take lots of time and effort.

The second issue is the cultures. I offer no opinion on which culture is "better", but they are different. Now MS is coming in as a hostile takeover. That is not going to sit well with Yahoo employees. On the other side, MS people may not want to bring in Yahoo people.

Third, large scale mergers like this almost never work. AOL-Time Warner. Daimer-Chrylser. Recent history has shown that failure happens more often than naught. And those mergers were approved by both companies involved.

Re:What is MS hoping to gain exactly? (2, Interesting)

Captain Nitpick (16515) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016604)

Third, large scale mergers like this almost never work. AOL-Time Warner. Daimer-Chrylser. Recent history has shown that failure happens more often than naught. And those mergers were approved by both companies involved.

Counterexample: ExxonMobil. Although the old Mobil employees still complain about the Exxon corporate culture.

Control of Yahoo's board, *without* buying them??? (4, Interesting)

RexDevious (321791) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016350)

There's good argument that MS is only after market share, primarily in email where the acquisition would give them a monopoly - less so in search and web properties where it would only slow their loss. And there's no argument that MS is after technology - as Yahoo's stuff is run on open source platforms MS could leave in place for awhile; but certainly not publicly develop further.

However... consider this scenario:

1. Microsoft makes a huge bid for Yahoo that, while not clearly being in it's own best interests, clearly *is* in the best interest of Yahoo shareholders, and is far too large to be matched by anyone.
2. Yahoo predictably resists the offer, to the point where it's arguably *not* acting in the best interests of it's shareholders.
3. Microsoft uses this behaviour to wage a proxy fight to get Yahoo's whole board of directors fired and replaced with people it favours.
4. Microsoft now essentially controls the board of a competitor, without ever having actually bought them.

Now... however you feel about an actual acquisition of Yahoo by Microsoft - can we all agree it would make perfect sense for Microsoft to wrest control of Yahoo's board of directors - even if they had no intention of buying them?

Can anyone shed any light on whether it would be possible for Microsoft to win a proxy fight without an iron-clad guarantee they'd buy Yahoo under the terms of their current offer; or if Yahoo could do something that would force them to should the offer be a whole or partial bluff to win a proxy fight?

Re:Control of Yahoo's board, *without* buying them (1)

droopycom (470921) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016762)

I dont think you can include iron-clad garantees into a proxy vote.

I mean its just an election, the party (in this case MSFT) tells you his candidates are better than the other's. What they do once they control the board is something else.

Off course if Microsoft gain control of the board and then screw over those Yahoo shareholder than voted for them, they might be able to sue them, but that takes time and resources. Also I guess the SEC or the government might intervene if it gets really ugly.

Also even if MSFT controls the board, I believe some things such as a Merger would still call for a vote of all the shareholders, so if the Merger offer was not up to shareholders expectations, they could vote No, even though they voted for having MSFT controlling the board.

Re:What is MS hoping to gain exactly? (0, Redundant)

Jugalator (259273) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016554)

Microsoft is currently pushing a lot for web services [wikipedia.org] , and Yahoo has a number of high profile web services, the most well-known perhaps being Flickr, Kelkoo, and del.icio.us. Yahoo! Mail also actually has a lot of users as well. They also either run or own other web services [wikipedia.org] , and the combined list of MS + Yahoo web services would be quite formidable. ;) So I think this is just a rather natural step for Microsoft to simply increase their online market share. It does seem a bit "unfocused" to me, but that hold true even before this, with Microsoft's own Live services alone. I guess it's just Microsoft's business idea. :-p

Re:What is MS hoping to gain exactly? (1)

Alioth (221270) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016624)

Microsoft isn't trying to merge with Yahoo, they are trying to take Yahoo over. A bit like Boeing did to McDonnell Douglas - buy them out and then shut them down. The value in buying Yahoo is to eliminate a competitor in the search arena, eat their marketshare, and go after their holy grail which is to next destroy Google.

Re:What is MS hoping to gain exactly? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23017336)

Could it be that Microsoft is attempting to whittle away players in the search field (eventually including themselves) in order to set Google up as the monopoly power in the market? I can't fathom why they would want to do this, but I also can't imagine that Microsoft doesn't realize most of Yahoo's users will probably flee to Google rather than using whatever Microhoo! service they come up with.

I'm confused... (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23015702)

Does Yahoo have really aerodynamic chairs or something?

Re:I'm confused... (2, Funny)

BrentH (1154987) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016258)

The real question is whether Yahoo has lavadynamic chairs. Ballmer is Satan after all, and I suspect most of Microsofts chairs have turned to ashes in the lava surrounding Ballmers Altar. And the helperdevils apprently havn't come up with a good solid chair that can stand the heat yet, and I think the reasoning is that, because of all the red in Yahoos brandname, Yahoos chairs may be more resilient to the lava. Thus it makes real good business sense to take over Yahoo, because, you know, then you get all the chairs and stuff.

For god's sake, think of the games (4, Funny)

peipas (809350) | more than 6 years ago | (#23015704)

I've said it before, if Microsoft eliminates Yahoo Cribbage I will kill myself.

Do you want that blood on your hands, Microsoft?

Re:For god's sake, think of the games (1)

Corpuscavernosa (996139) | more than 6 years ago | (#23015766)

Yahoo! is currently the king of fantasy sports games (hey, fantasy sports = fantasy rpg in coolness) and it would be atrocious to see those disappear. Beautiful interface, quality, accuracy. These aren't generally MS stregnths.

Re:For god's sake, think of the games (1)

that IT girl (864406) | more than 6 years ago | (#23015844)

That's the first thing I thought of, actually. Yahoo is doing so nicely on their own. What will become of my fantasy teams? The Pwners and the E-1337-ians will suffer greatly if MS has their way :o

Re:For god's sake, think of the games (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23015842)

They've already got all four 5s. Oh, but Microsoft doesn't have the right Jack. Sorry MS. Nice try though.

Re:For god's sake, think of the games (2, Funny)

explosivejared (1186049) | more than 6 years ago | (#23015928)

You clearly aren't familiar with the Great Netscape Mass Suicide Event. 100,000 dead in minutes. I hear Ballmer watches it every Christmas.

Give it up already! (0, Troll)

n1_111 (597775) | more than 6 years ago | (#23015718)

Yahoo is done. Only Microsoft can save it now. Sell out today, before the offer is lowered.

Usual motions (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23015750)

Company A wants to buy Company B. Company A offers a price to shareholders, not too high, because if you pay too much you get punished by your own shareholders, so typically a bit too low. Then Company B waves their hands in the air, and start playing a hard to get bitch. Company A prepares a higher bid. Repeat a number of times. And Yahoo will be Microsoft's. So far it's just a bidding game.

Microsoft gains nothing except reduced competition (2, Insightful)

Bryansix (761547) | more than 6 years ago | (#23015754)

Microsoft will gain no synergy from this acquisition. If anything they are just gaining redundancies. This is just the extinguish part of their business.

Re:Microsoft gains nothing except reduced competit (1)

Mongoose Disciple (722373) | more than 6 years ago | (#23015774)

Eh. Google gained nothing but redundancies by buying YouTube, but I'm not quite ready to call that a bad move.

Microsoft does make some pretty boneheaded business decisions, but this one is too soon to call definitively.

Re:Microsoft gains nothing except reduced competit (2, Insightful)

hkgroove (791170) | more than 6 years ago | (#23015848)

I don't think so. Google consolidated redundancies if anything (even with keeping Google Video) and possibly created a better bargaining chip for the future of the video market when dealing with networks and the like.

Whether or not it worked for the better is a different matter altogether.

Re:Microsoft gains nothing except reduced competit (1)

hkgroove (791170) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016188)

Actually, they would gain flickr (I mentioned this in the flickr discussion [slashdot.org] as well... and probably better suited here...). Granted that's only a part of yahoo, it's probably a good stream of revenue for Yahoo and one of the few that people will actually pay to use; getting away from the advertising business model.

There is also a lot of data (personal and otherwise) on flickr. flickr can almost be a myspace / facebook, but without the idiots as it has one purpose (photography) and not spread thin over many (attention whoring / music / etc). But really, it has just about all the same things (profile / testimonials (or photo comments) / discussion forums that are usually kept on track / all your attention whoring needs... except the ability to alter your profile page and add a bunch of stupid crap that pisses other people off).

It also gets the 30-50 year olds that have been lost in the social networking ether.

Many people defected from flickr when Yahoo completely took over (you now have to use a yahoo id), I can't imagine the amount of users who would defect in MS took over (I would be one of them).

To where, however, is the question.

Re:Microsoft gains nothing except reduced competit (1)

Bryansix (761547) | more than 6 years ago | (#23017614)

If you want community use http://www.phototakers.com/ [phototakers.com] but if you want to just post photos online then start your own website like I did.

No cost is too great.,, (1)

KnowledgeEngine (1225122) | more than 6 years ago | (#23015756)

I think someone at Microsoft got this little ditty stuck in their head.

Let's fight
We will not be oppressed
Our courage will be seen by all
No cost is too great
The higher order shall reign
Our way is true
Prepared to fight
Ready for war
New Slogan: Microsoft-Where do you want to be a Yahoo today?

Good Ole' Legg (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23015758)

major Yahoo! shareholder Legg Mason has announced
Good ole' Legg, always on his foott with his eyee on the ball.

ob Star Wars (2, Funny)

albeit unknown (136964) | more than 6 years ago | (#23015786)

The more you tighten your grip, Tarkin....

Typical MS Arrogance (4, Informative)

amplt1337 (707922) | more than 6 years ago | (#23015838)

They're approaching a Yahoo! acquisition with all the grace of the Mongols taking over a medieval village -- "If you let us in, you'll get a rough deal; if you resist, you'll get an even rougher one."

All it takes is for a couple more major shareholders to insist that Yahoo! is worth more than MS wants to pay, and the bluff will be very effectively called; you can't do a hostile takeover [wikipedia.org] if you can't find shareholders willing to sell a controlling interest, and the shareholders are ultimately the ones who would suffer from an overly low valuation. Sure, maybe the Board is holding out for an unduly high valuation, but more likely MS is mis-valuing Yahoo! -- though I'm sure Yahoo!'s value would drop to whatever MS paid for it pretty quickly, if Ballmer really wants to get this far out of the company's core business.

All the more reason for major shareholders to turn their noses to the deal.

Stone Cold quote... (1)

Notquitecajun (1073646) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016144)

"You've got two choices. We can do this the hard way, or we can do this the REAL hard way."

Yes.... (1)

jd (1658) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016260)

But all Microsoft has to do is find a senior manager or two who have significant stock and are disgruntled. Bound to be plenty of those. Microsoft then makes them a job offer with much better pay. Cheaper than buying the stocks directly. Not sure if they can buy stocks directly, but if they can, again, that would be cheaper than buying all the stock. A third option is for Microsoft to act in ways that deliberately drive Yahoo's stock value down and use the threat of financial loss to intimidate shareholders into coughing up.

Except they're offering above market rates (1)

EmbeddedJanitor (597831) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016956)

For the village.

At the end of the day, most shareholders don't have sentimental attachments to their stock (that's the first deadly sin of playing the market). If they get a good price they'll take it.

Re:Except they're offering above market rates (1)

amplt1337 (707922) | more than 6 years ago | (#23017258)

Except they're not. [infoworld.com]

MSFT was hoping to buy at the equivalent of $31/share, though they're offering less as their stock slips; YHOO is currently trading at (conservatively) $27.50, and if you think Microsoft can dump several billion dollars' worth of demand into the common market without spurring that trading price up at least $3.50 per share, you're overly optimistic.

Microsoft is simply going to have to pay more, despite their threats to the contrary. Admittedly the Yahoo! stock may be trending up because of irrational confidence brought on by the Board's response to MS's offer, but so far that appears to be a self-fulfilling market prophecy, whether or not it's justified by the company's fundamentals. It remains to be seen what the valuation will be twelve months down the line if Yahoo! resists the takeover attempt.

How to clean out your Yahoo Mail account (1)

rastoboy29 (807168) | more than 6 years ago | (#23015850)

If you're like me, you don't want MS to get ahold of your ancient Yahoo mail account.  Not that I trust Yahoo implicitly, but I don't trust MS at all.

So I plan on springing for the $20 for POP access to the account, so that I can retrieve/delete the decade's worth of email I have in there.

Re:How to clean out your Yahoo Mail account (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23016228)

Seems a little dumb to pay $20 to purge the account when you can easily use FetchYahoo! located at http://fetchyahoo.twizzler.org/ [twizzler.org] or http://sourceforge.net/projects/fetchyahoo [sourceforge.net]

-eg

MOD PARENT UP (1)

porcupine8 (816071) | more than 6 years ago | (#23017294)

This is likely to be very useful to many of us if this deal ever winds up going through.

Go for it Bill! (4, Insightful)

pegr (46683) | more than 6 years ago | (#23015876)

While I would hate to see Yahoo! bite the dust (more for historical reasons), it would be great for MS to flush a stack of cash, as I can see MS doing nothing but destroying what little is left of them.

Yes, MS, cash out everyone still hanging on to that sinking tub! The faster MS runs out of cash, the sooner we get to enjoy a world without them.

As for Yahoo!, I remember when you all didn't suck. Yep, you and HP...

Re:Go for it Bill! (1)

RobBebop (947356) | more than 6 years ago | (#23015924)

The faster MS runs out of cash, the sooner we get to enjoy a world without them.

You haven't seen the SCO trial, have you? An organization can go for YEARS without any money as long as the a-holes running it have enough personal wealth to pilot their sinking ship.

Re:Go for it Bill! (1)

TristanGrimaux (841255) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016250)

The bigger you are, the faster you fall.

Re:Go for it Bill! (2, Informative)

maxume (22995) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016708)

Microsoft is awash in not just cash, but income:

http://finance.yahoo.com/q/is?s=MSFT [yahoo.com]

The make a net income in excess of $1 billion a month. They would recover from a disastrous deal in less than two years(because they have $19 billion in cash; 19+24=43, close enough to the offer of $45 billion)

They are trying to acquire Yahoo because they think it is a cheap way to gain revenue and they think they can operate Yahoo more effectively than Yahoo is currently operating Yahoo. Maybe they can't improve Yahoo all that much, but they still wouldn't lose all of the $45 billion asking price, so they are willing to try.

Yahoo is still trying to poison the deal:

http://news.google.com/news?q=yahoo+google+ad+deal [google.com]

(this is fresh news, get it while it's hot)

Re:Go for it Bill! (1)

ardle (523599) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016920)

If I remember correctly, MS said that they intended to partly finance the buy-out with borrowed money (maybe 50%?). Did they say who was going to lend it to them?

Re:Go for it Bill! (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23017182)

What little is left of them?? A world without them? Are you kidding? If you're expecting this deal to cripple them AND you're arguing that this would be a Good Thing, you're wrong on both counts.

A quick perusal of their investor relations site ( e.g. http://www.microsoft.com/msft/earnings/FY08/earn_rel_q1_08.mspx [microsoft.com] ) would tell you that they're experiencing phenomenal growth and that they have a profit margin enjoyed by very few large companies. To argue that MS is somehow on it's last legs is ridiculous. They can tank this deal and still be more or less fine. They could literally burn the $40bn in cash and still be more or less fine (of course, their investors might get a little jittery if they started doing that...).

And to argue that the complete meltdown of a company that employs 80,000 people worldwide - most of whom are IT workers - would somehow be good for the rest of us is equally ludicrous.

You might as well have said "Spending $40bn on a risky deal is totally going to kill MS because there's no way one of the fastest growing modern companies can spend one year of income on an acquisition. And this is great because I want to get paid less."

What is Yahoo Worth? (4, Interesting)

RobBebop (947356) | more than 6 years ago | (#23015880)

Yahoo! [yahoo.com] is currently maintaining a $36 Billion dollar market cap. It goes without saying that deciding what an internet company is worth is somewhat shaky ground, but they are profitable by $0.47 per share in the last year and they have a set of managers who are clamoring that they have a lot of new revenue streams that are going to materialize in the next year or two.

So, what is Yahoo! actually worth if Microsoft's offer isn't good enough? $40 Billion? $50 Billion? $60 Billion? $100 Billion?

Can anybody defend their valuation with some finite analysis that goes beyond pulling numbers out of thin air? Furthermore, can somebody figure out how much Microsoft would be willing to pay based on the benefits that merging Yahoo's customers and properties into their own would produce?

If you look at the 5-year chart for MSFT [yahoo.com] , it is pretty clear that they have done a good job of maintaining the status quo... while the only real marketable success that they have enjoyed during that time has been the introduction of a competitive video game system.

On the other hand, the 6 month chart for Google [yahoo.com] is suggestive that the future value of internet based ad revenue isn't worth nearly as much as it used to be.

So, what gives?

Re:What is Yahoo Worth? (1)

jalet (36114) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016014)

First I must say I don't understand anything about shares, as I don't own any, nor about "market".

But if you try to compare 5 years datas with 6 months datas and try to infer something from this, I think you're probably incorrect.

Re:What is Yahoo Worth? (1)

RobBebop (947356) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016166)

First I must say I don't understand anything about shares

You missed the point of each chart that I linked to (assuming you even went and looked at them or even tried to infer what they looked like based on the context of the description that I added.

The first chart was showing that Microsoft has not had any significant "growth" since prior to 2003, which suggests that they think acquiring a company like Yahoo would change that.

The second chart was to approximate the short term value of the internet advertising market, which is apparently the reason the MSFT wants to buy Yahoo.

But if you try to compare 5 years datas with 6 months datas and try to infer something from this, I think you're probably incorrect.

I may be wrong about one or both of my reasons to link to these particular charts, but dismissing an opinion without taking the time to understand the context is definitely incorrect -- especially since you admit to knowing nothing about the markets...

Re:What is Yahoo Worth? (1)

compro01 (777531) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016134)

while the only real marketable success that they have enjoyed during that time has been the introduction of a competitive video game system.
depends on how you define competitive. IIRC, they're selling the console at a good bit below cost. then again, i'm fairly sure sony is selling the ps3 below cost also, though i believe nintendo is making a profit on each wii system.

Re:What is Yahoo Worth? (1)

MooseMuffin (799896) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016232)

The xbox division is actually turning a profit these days.

Re:What is Yahoo Worth? (1)

p0tat03 (985078) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016904)

Actually, I do believe that the Xbox production costs are down far enough that MS is turning a (slight) profit on each unit. Not to mention that the attach rates for the console (games sold per console) are better than expected, which drives 3rd party support, and gives MS a healthy chunk of the pie. The Xbox division, profitable or not, is looking pretty healthy.

Re:What is Yahoo Worth? (1)

Fastball (91927) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016160)

I don't think you can draw the conclusion that internet based ad revenue is less valuable by looking at the charts. Google's problem is their burgeoning expenses and the fact that it is hard for any company to grow 30% in perpetuity.

Online advertising is set to grow 23% this year [google.com] . Better still, it is expected to double in just four years to about $40 billion. Better than a sharp stick in the eye.

MSFT has held serve because of their massive cash flow from sales of Windows. However, that cash cow is diminishing, and it could very well be MSFT that sees its share price recede if it can't form better and execute existing strategies.

Re:What is Yahoo Worth? (2, Interesting)

RobBebop (947356) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016314)

Better still, it is expected to double in just four years to about $40 billion. Better than a sharp stick in the eye.

So they think they can capture 50% of the $40 Billion revenue per year in 2012 (assuming they can split it with the other major competitor), instead of 20% (if they are fighting against both Google and an independent Yahoo!).

I like it. Your reason gets a gold star. Yahoo! will help MSFT capture revenues of $20 Billion per year of internet advertising revenues instead of $8 Billion per year in only a matter of several years. Subtract out the costs, and owning Yahoo! might generate an extra $30 Billion dollars in 7 years time... which certainly makes them worth at least $40 Billion now.

Re:What is Yahoo Worth? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23016224)

5 year vs. 6 months - that's what you've got?

Re:What is Yahoo Worth? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23016948)

It's not the charts. It's the exeptional value that Yahoo represent - not for the market generally - but for Microsoft specifically.

Yahoo is the only chance for Microsoft to try to establish their brand on the Internet. They have tried it on their own - but they just could not do it. There is really no other Internet company like Yahoo - it's simply priceless for Microsoft. If they can't get Yahoo, they get stuck in their pre-Internet role, which is a slow death sentence.

Microsoft, Ballmer clearly knows that this is not just an other takeover. It's a life and death match to for Microsoft. It's their only ticket to try to get into the future, since they have not been able to do it on their own.

That's why traditional charts, evaluations, etc. don't really matter in this case: yahoo is basically priceless for Microsoft.

Re:What is Yahoo Worth? (1)

RobBebop (947356) | more than 6 years ago | (#23017306)

traditional charts, evaluations, etc. don't really matter in this case: yahoo is basically priceless for Microsoft.

So MSFT should mortgage the entire $250 Billion market cap that they have in today's market and hand it over to the Yahoo! shareholders to do what they want with? That would be a stellar return of 500% for Yahoo shareholders. I think they would approve it. :)

The answer "it is priceless" might work in a Mastercard commercial, but is doesn't work in the stock market.

Re:What is Yahoo Worth? (1)

thedoe (1064772) | more than 6 years ago | (#23017188)

Comparing the two over different time frames is not a legitimate comparison. As far as longer term valuation, Google is still out ahead of Microsoft for the past 2 years (Google wasn't around for the entire 5 year comparison).

http://finance.yahoo.com/q/bc?s=GOOG&t=2y&l=on&z=m&q=l&c=msft [yahoo.com]

Re:What is Yahoo Worth? (1)

RobBebop (947356) | more than 6 years ago | (#23017352)

See my reply to the accusation that I was comparing Microsoft directly to Google here [slashdot.org] .

I am sorry that I didn't more clearly distinguish that I was attempting an analysis of two unrelated charts.

Re:What is Yahoo Worth? (1)

rtechie (244489) | more than 6 years ago | (#23017764)

The short answer is that Legg Mason is just angling for more money.

Senior management at Yahoo! obviously doesn't like or want the Microsoft buyout because they know that most of them will be fired by MS due to their poor financial management of the company. They're supposedly trying to fight the deal. In reality, they've already given up and are trying to stall long enough to gut the company by pissing away money and offering absurdly generous severance packages to employees (2 years pay with benefits and no non-compete agreements). I suspect that a number of them have already secretly accepted offers at other companies (like Google) and are trying to steal talent away before they're fired.

This is why Microsoft is going for the proxy fight. They KNOW the management at Yahoo! isn't negotiating in good faith and the want to get rid of them as quickly as possible.

Re:What is Yahoo Worth? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23017768)

> 5-year chart for MSFT... 6 month chart for Google

Let's look at the big picture [yahoo.com] here, shall we?

It's a start (1, Insightful)

value_added (719364) | more than 6 years ago | (#23015892)

From the fine article:

A major Yahoo Inc shareholder, Legg Mason, is ready to back Yahoo's effort to stay independent if Microsoft Corp lowers its buyout offer, the Wall Street Journal said, citing an interview with portfolio manager Bill Miller.

Seems to me that adds up to vote count of 1 against, and an undetermined number in favour of the buyout.

I have no idea who Legg Mason is, or what influence he has, but it is possible he's a Carl Icahn type and his actions may be an important factor. That said, my guess is that this thing will end up in a proxy fight [wikipedia.org] that will be harder to follow for an average person than the ISO voting process, but with the added bonus of having the interesting politics and social ramifications replaced by arcane legal strategies and maneuverings that only lawyers and Wall Street Journal reporters could appreciate or find interesting.

I do think it would be good to see Microsoft fail to get their way for once. Assuming, of course, that a successful buyout of Yahoo isn't a failure in the making.

Re:It's a start (5, Informative)

RobBebop (947356) | more than 6 years ago | (#23015970)

I have no idea who Legg Mason is, or what influence he has

Legg Mason is an investment firm that owns a 6% stake [yahoo.com] of Yahoo.

This is actually 83,843,501 votes AGAINST the current MSFT offer.

Transparent posturing (1)

Phurge (1112105) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016488)

I think its some transparent posturing by Legg Mason in the hope of pushing Microsoft to increase its offer.

Re:It's a start (1)

Animaether (411575) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016622)

"This is actually 83,843,501 votes AGAINST the current MSFT offer."

Uhm, no. it's 1 vote. 1 vote which happens to have a 6% share of the total, or 83,843,501 shares. That doesn't make it 83,843,501 votes.

As much fun as movies make it to say that somebody has 1 million reasons (dollars) to kill somebody, you shouldn't apply that to general life. If nothing else, the U.S. electoral college should have taught you that.

Re:It's a start (1)

RobBebop (947356) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016824)

A 6% stake of the votes is fairly powerful, especially if a certain percentage of the shareholders don't even bother voting.

I do not, however, understand the subtlety that you are trying to suggest that makes this parallel to the electoral college. The popular vote versus the votes cast by the representatives of the state do not (to me) seem to be correlated to the votes cast during shareholders during a hostile takeover.

Re:It's a start (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23017000)

That doesn't make it 83,843,501 votes.

Yes it does. One share. One vote.

To use your Electoral College analogy, does California have one electoral vote or 50+?

Re:It's a start (1)

jsight (8987) | more than 6 years ago | (#23017060)

"This is actually 83,843,501 votes AGAINST the current MSFT offer."

Uhm, no. it's 1 vote. 1 vote which happens to have a 6% share of the total, or 83,843,501 shares. That doesn't make it 83,843,501 votes.

As much fun as movies make it to say that somebody has 1 million reasons (dollars) to kill somebody, you shouldn't apply that to general life. If nothing else, the U.S. electoral college should have taught you that.


This is the weirdest argument that I have seen on the internet in a while, and that's a difficult feat to accomplish.

Nevertheless, I shall jump in and point out that each share gets a vote. Thus it is more like 83,843,501 votes.

Re:It's a start (1)

porcupine8 (816071) | more than 6 years ago | (#23017356)

So if I owned 1% of Yahoo, I'd get one vote, too? So we'd each have one vote, and if our votes differed (and everyone else abstained), it'd be a tie? Even though his one vote is six times the size of mine?

Math. Get you some.

woo boy. (1)

Animaether (411575) | more than 6 years ago | (#23018120)

I'll just reply to myself seeing as you can't reply to 4 people at once.

Get some math me - thanks, will do. Oh wait, math doesn't have anything to do with what I said.

Electoral College - 'll demonstrate, and point out why I'm not comparing it directly to shareholder stakes but to the general concept.

Here's the deal... I know that in shares, people with more shares have more swing. I'm certainly not disputing.

I'm also guessing that for whatever reason, they decided to say that each share would be termed to have a 'vote' - I haven't looked into terminology, but what the hey.

However, in plain ol' English, I've never seen an object make a vote. Let alone a virtual object. There have not been 83,843,501 conscious decisions made my 83,843,501 people that say "screw you, Microsoft".

Say you're going out to a movie with 3 other people. You and 2 others vote for Movie A, the remaining guy votes for Movie B. 4 votes in total, 3 for Movie A. Clear cut enough, no?
But now that one guy says "yeah, but I'm paying, so Movie B it is". Fair enough (and let me stress that - fair enough, I'm not arguing that in the case of the shareholder have a 6% share and that -that- is what matters. Heck, didn't I even point that out in my post?), but just because he has greater swing does not mean that suddenly he has 4 votes while you 3 other guys have zero votes. Your votes may be meaningless, the other guy may always get his vote's way regardless of what you other 3 guys vote, but the actual vote count does not change.

And so the electoral college. I'll leave that to you guys to figure out what I meant - I obviously didn't make myself clear enough before :)

Legg Mason also likely has a board member... (1)

xxxJonBoyxxx (565205) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016798)

Legg Mason also likely has a board member with a 6% share. Yahoo's board is elected from scratch every year, so all Microsoft has to do is win just one proxy election to seize majority control of Yahoo.

More likely Legg Mason is worried that Microsoft may actually conduct a hostile takeover for a lower price than the friendly price. (Microsoft's lower price would actually makes sense; Yahoo would probably be worth less after a hostile takeover.) Legg Mason probably doesn't care on the face of things whether Yahoo gets taken over or not, but they do care about the value of their stake.

I think Legg Mason's message is music to Microsoft's ears: if enough major shareholders get worried about a lower offer, they'll press the existing Yahoo board to cut the friendly deal (and then Microsoft will purge the board as soon as they get control).

Re:It's a start (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23016478)

I have no idea who Legg Mason is


Sounds like a conversation overheard in Ballmer's office:

"I don't know who this Legg Mason fellow is, but tell him if he doesn't sell us his shares we're gonna kill his dog"

Integration = death march for MSFT (2, Interesting)

Fastball (91927) | more than 6 years ago | (#23015902)

Two very divergent cultures. I think it is a lose-lose for MSFT. Get the deal done, and they become mired in a prolonged integration while adding significant debt to their balance sheet. The deal falls through and they are still left with an eroding cash flow (Windows) and problems with execution in virtually everything else they are in.

It is fascinating. You have two dinosaurs from two different periods. The Windows OS boom during the late 80s to mid 90s for MSFT and the internet boom during the mid 90s to early 00s.

I'm not expecting the best of times for either company, but unlike most folks, I'd bet on Yahoo for an appreciation 5-10 years out from now. MSFT is almost like a energy MLP. Everyone gets paid...until the resource runs out.

corpirate nazis admit selling US infactdead scams? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23016058)

just kidding. they think we're all brain dead or spineless, so they 'admit' to nothing at all. let yOUR conscience be yOUR guide. you can be more helpful than you might have imagined. there are still some choices. if they do not suit you, consider the likely results of continuing to follow the corepirate nazi hypenosys story LIEn, whereas anything of relevance is replaced almost instantly with pr ?firm? scriptdead mindphuking propaganda or 'celebrity' trivia 'foam'. meanwhile; don't forget to get a little more oxygen on yOUR brain, & look up in the sky from time to time, starting early in the day. there's lots going on up there.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20071229/ap_on_sc/ye_climate_records;_ylt=A0WTcVgednZHP2gB9wms0NUE [yahoo.com]
http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20080108/ts_alt_afp/ushealthfrancemortality;_ylt=A9G_RngbRIVHsYAAfCas0NUE [yahoo.com]
http://www.nytimes.com/2007/12/31/opinion/31mon1.html?em&ex=1199336400&en=c4b5414371631707&ei=5087%0A [nytimes.com]

is it time to get real yet? A LOT of energy is being squandered in attempts to keep US in the dark. in the end (give or take a few 1000 years), the creators will prevail (world without end, etc...), as it has always been. the process of gaining yOUR release from the current hostage situation may not be what you might think it is. butt of course, most of US don't know, or care what a precarious/fatal situation we're in. for example; the insidious attempts by the felonious corepirate nazi execrable to block the suns' light, interfering with a requirement (sunlight) for us to stay healthy/alive. it's likely not good for yOUR health/memories 'else they'd be bragging about it? we're intending for the whoreabully deceptive (they'll do ANYTHING for a bit more monIE/power) felons to give up/fail even further, in attempting to control the 'weather', as well as a # of other things/events.

http://video.google.com/videosearch?hl=en&q=video+cloud+spraying [google.com]

dictator style micro management has never worked (for very long). it's an illness. tie that with life0cidal aggression & softwar gangster style bullying, & what do we have? a greed/fear/ego based recipe for disaster. meanwhile, you can help to stop the bleeding (loss of life & limb);

http://www.cnn.com/2007/POLITICS/12/28/vermont.banning.bush.ap/index.html [cnn.com]

the bleeding must be stopped before any healing can begin. jailing a couple of corepirate nazi hired goons would send a clear message to the rest of the world from US. any truthful look at the 'scorecard' would reveal that we are a society in decline/deep doo-doo, despite all of the scriptdead pr ?firm? generated drum beating & flag waving propaganda that we are constantly bombarded with. is it time to get real yet? please consider carefully ALL of yOUR other 'options'. the creators will prevail. as it has always been.

corepirate nazi execrable costs outweigh benefits
(Score:-)mynuts won, the king is a fink)
by ourselves on everyday 24/7

as there are no benefits, just more&more death/debt & disruption. fortunately there's an 'army' of light bringers, coming yOUR way. the little ones/innocents must/will be protected. after the big flash, ALL of yOUR imaginary 'borders' may blur a bit? for each of the creators' innocents harmed in any way, there is a debt that must/will be repaid by you/us, as the perpetrators/minions of unprecedented evile, will not be available. 'vote' with (what's left in) yOUR wallet, & by your behaviors. help bring an end to unprecedented evile's manifestation through yOUR owned felonious corepirate nazi glowbull warmongering execrable. some of US should consider ourselves somewhat fortunate to be among those scheduled to survive after the big flash/implementation of the creators' wwwildly popular planet/population rescue initiative/mandate. it's right in the manual, 'world without end', etc.... as we all ?know?, change is inevitable, & denying/ignoring gravity, logic, morality, etc..., is only possible, on a temporary basis. concern about the course of events that will occur should the life0cidal execrable fail to be intervened upon is in order. 'do not be dismayed' (also from the manual). however, it's ok/recommended, to not attempt to live under/accept, fauxking nazi felon greed/fear/ego based pr ?firm? scriptdead mindphuking hypenosys.

consult with/trust in yOUR creators. providing more than enough of everything for everyone (without any distracting/spiritdead personal gain motives), whilst badtolling unprecedented evile, using an unlimited supply of newclear power, since/until forever. see you there?

"If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land."

meanwhile, the life0cidal philistines continue on their path of death, debt, & disruption for most of US. gov. bush denies health care for the little ones;

http://www.cnn.com/2007/POLITICS/10/03/bush.veto/index.html [cnn.com]

whilst demanding/extorting billions to paint more targets on the bigger kids;

http://www.cnn.com/2007/POLITICS/12/12/bush.war.funding/index.html [cnn.com]

& pretending that it isn't happening here;

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/us_and_americas/article3086937.ece [timesonline.co.uk]
all is not lost/forgotten/forgiven

(yOUR elected) president al gore (deciding not to wait for the much anticipated 'lonesome al answers yOUR questions' interview here on /.) continues to attempt to shed some light on yOUR foibles. talk about reverse polarity;

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/environment/article3046116.ece [timesonline.co.uk]

question (1)

fred fleenblat (463628) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016118)

If I despise both companies should I be for or against a merger?

Re:question (1)

sadgoblin (1269500) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016172)

Well, according to math, if they merge something good can happen to those two. (minus * minus equals plus, for all those who forgot)

Poison Pill (1)

CodeBuster (516420) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016186)

If the shareholders are behind the board on this one then perhaps now would be a good time to enact a poison pill [wikipedia.org] to make any hostile takeover a very bitter pill indeed for Microsoft to swallow.

Not that strong of a no (2)

rayzat (733303) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016230)

It's really not a resounding no to the merger, the basicly said we won't support any sort of deal if MSFT lowers the offer. They also said if you pay an extra $1 a share we'll support your takeover 100%.

Why is MSFT so desperate? I think I know why (1, Flamebait)

Spy der Mann (805235) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016254)

They've realized their future in the Operating System market is pale at best.
Remember the EU court's decision about Microsoft being a monopoly? Well this was on Sep 2007. Is it a coincidence that less than 5 months later Microsoft offered to buy Yahoo!? I think not.

Sooner or later Microsoft would have to lift the veil [boston.com] on the APIs for their most popular products, and *anyone* (including GPL software developers) can read them. Microsoft knew this day would come, and their desktop market dominance will be destroyed sooner or later. How to prevent the competition from making better products, if you can't hinder them from being compatible? You can't.

So Microsoft was cornered into getting hold of an existing successful market: Internet services - that's the only way they can survive in the long term. But if they offered to buy Yahoo! after they released their APIs, the public would realize Microsoft's disadvantage. So they first offer to buy Yahoo, and THEN they release their APIs.

The fact that Steve Ballmer wrote that open letter only shows Microsoft's struggle against extinction.

Ladies and gentlemen, this is it. This is the beginning of the end for Microsoft. Congratulations.

Re:Why is MSFT so desperate? I think I know why (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#23016496)

"Is it a coincidence that less than 5 months later Microsoft offered to buy Yahoo!?"

LOL I bet you read tea leaves too don't you?

Could spell trouble... (2, Insightful)

imstanny (722685) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016270)

The same thing happened to Cablivision, when the Dolan family wanted to buy them out for $36/share. Some major shareholders like ClearBridge Advisors, who owned 31.4 million shares at the time, or 13.6 percent of Cablevision voted against the buyout. When the buyout didn't go through, price fell to $30, and is now ~$23/share.

Remember, Yahoo was trading at ~$19/share, before Microsoft's offer inflated the price to ~$31. Microsoft, essentially, bid up the price. If the merger is voted against, the price will likely fall back toward $19 (I say this because aside from Microsoft's offer, nothing materially changed with Yahoo. In fact, they are projected to miss their quarter numbers which they will be reporting in a couple of weeks).

Also, Microsoft can start buying up Yahoo shares on the open market in a hostile bid (from Shareholders willing to sell their shares), which are currently trading below $31/share. So I wouldn't be surprised if Microsoft will get Yahoo below their current offer...

Seriously (1)

warrior_s (881715) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016398)

Not to be mean to microsoft or anything. But its reaaaly difficult for me to understand how in the world someone at microsoft can think that they can take over yahoo and on top of it they will retain the good talent in yahoo.

Former Yahooligans? (3, Interesting)

zentinal (602572) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016402)

I would assume that since the takeover has been announced, that Yahoo! has been bleeding talented folks who don't want to be assimilated.

Have any of these folks started new companies? Any high profile defections to the Googleplex? Or would that be prevented by non-compete clauses in their contracts?

Useless Migration (1)

bigdadro (452037) | more than 6 years ago | (#23016466)

I'd imagine the morale of developers employed by Yahoo would take a huge dip is well. AFAIK most of the Yahoo infrastructure is based on open source technologies. If MS were to purchase Yahoo I'd be willing to bet money they would waste years migrating Yahoo to the MS stack, just for the sake of it being on MS technology. Exactly what they did with Hotmail. Much work with no real

The basic point is the merger would really be like mixing oil and water. Even from a fiscal standpoint i don't see it being a gain for Yahoo investors. The two companies just don't complement each other.

Breaking news: Yahoo Google Aliance... (2, Interesting)

AHTuttle (1270388) | more than 6 years ago | (#23017038)

Seems interesting given the timing...

http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20080409/bs_nm/yahoo_google_dc;_ylt=At1ZbJEnb.d8l6sncqqoLY6s0NUE [yahoo.com]

  Yahoo in talks to use Google search ads: source

  SAN FRANCISCO/NEW YORK (Reuters) - Yahoo Inc (YHOO.O) is in advanced talks to carry Web search advertising from Google Inc (GOOG.O) as part of a search for potential alternatives to being bought by Microsoft Corp (MSFT.O), a source familiar with the discussions said on Wednesday.

Yahoo also is still in talks with Time Warner Inc's (TWX.N) AOL about a potential tie-up, the person said.

I'm not sure which I'd rather have them be in bed with. But somehow I think this is better than MS.

Isn't this sort of expected? (1)

sydneyfong (410107) | more than 6 years ago | (#23017812)

1. Shareholder want their shares to have higher value.
2. Yahoo! execs say MS undervalues them.
3. Shareholder supports Yahoo!
3.5 (Hopefully) MS buys Yahoo! at a ridiculous price
4. Profit!!!

yahoo owns flickr (1)

mdmarkus (522132) | more than 6 years ago | (#23018334)

Flickr has always embraced 3rd party utilities and has an API that allows you to roll your own application using the photos on their site. They also are pretty up front with their attitude of "the service is ours, but the photos remain the photographer's". If Microsoft buys them, how long will that last?
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