The chances of Yahoo!'s
Carl Icahn and Microsoft
Icahn and Microsoft have met over the past week, confirming Microsoft's renewed interest in buying either all of Yahoo! or simply its search business if Icahn is successful in getting his alternate slate of directors elected next month.
Yahoo! shares climbed on the news, which is a refreshing change for Yahoo! investors, but a wake-up call for current board members to start clearing their desks. Microsoft considers it "premature to discuss at this time important details such as the price or other terms of a possible transaction," though one would think that it won't be much lower than the original $31 offer, despite the erosion of Yahoo! in recent months.
Microsoft is likely to carve up Yahoo! if it settles for swallowing it whole. It can unload Yahoo!'s non-search properties to traffic heavies like Time Warner's
Either way, things just got a whole lot more interesting. Microsoft is getting what it wanted all along by letting shareholders decide on the fate of Microhoo. Yahoo! shareholders are unlikely to turn down Mr. Softy's hand in a rescue attempt, leaky lifeboat and all.
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