The networking giant keeps giving second chances to the owners of Norwegian teleconference specialist Tandberg -- and third, and fourth, and ...
The deadline for Cisco's latest buyout offer, which includes an ill-conceived boost to the price, had been extended three times in the hopes that at least 90% of shareholders would find the $3.4 billion price tag sweet enough.
Oh, and if this deadline should pass without any 90% agreement, it will not be extended again. That's a promise. On the other hand, Cisco reserves the right to waive the 90% ownership condition. Way to stand firm, guys.
It's just two more days, and the tally now stands at 84% -- but once again, Cisco is bending over backwards to get the deal done. And that sends the wrong message to future Cisco buyout targets, possibly raising prices and lengthening negotiations around any and all future deals.
Cisco CEO John Chambers is following in the footsteps of acquisition-hungry leaders like Larry Ellison of Oracle
In all fairness, Chambers has generally walked in Buffett's shoes through the minefield of buyout negotiations in the past -- but that's exactly why I think it's dangerous to shift to a new track now. Imagine if Microsoft
Walk away now and you might keep some of your hard-won deal-making credibility, John. But if you end up waiving the 90% requirement, you're going to look downright silly. Good luck with your next acquisition, in that case.
You're gonna need it.
Fool contributor Anders Bylund owns shares in Marvel and Disney, but holds no other position in any of the companies discussed here. Should he just get off Cisco's case already? Share your thoughts in the comments box below. Berkshire Hathaway, Walt Disney, and Marvel Entertainment are Motley Fool Stock Advisor picks. The Fool owns shares of Berkshire Hathaway and Oracle, and Motley Fool Options recommends a diagonal call strategy on Microsoft. Try any of our Foolish newsletters today, free for 30 days. You can check out Anders' holdings and a concise bio if you like, and The Motley Fool is investors writing for investors.