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Microsoft Corp. offered to buy search engine operator Yahoo Inc. for $44.6 billion in cash and stock in a move to boost its competitive edge in the online services market.
Microsoft Proposes Acquisition of Yahoo! for $31 per Share [biz.yahoo.com]
REDMOND, Wash., Feb. 1 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT - News) today announced that it has made a proposal to the Yahoo! Inc. (Nasdaq: YHOO - News) Board of Directors to acquire all the outstanding shares of Yahoo! common stock for per share consideration of $31 representing a total equity value of approximately $44.6 billion.
From Fortune's Daily Briefing [dailybriefing.blogs.fortune.cnn.com]
Microsoft’s letter to Yahoo further indicates that a year ago, Microsoft approached Yahoo’s board but was told that “now is not the right time from the perspective of our shareholders to enter into discussions regarding an acquisition transaction.” Given the plunge in Yahoo stock and the prospect of a damaging recession this year, if now isn’t the right time, it’s hard to imagine what is.
[edited by: Marcia at 12:02 pm (utc) on Feb. 1, 2008]
I hope it doesn't go through either since I'm completely out of Yahoo on my main site and I am afraid that inktomi's ban list from 10 years ago might make it on MSN too.
What I do have is 100% organic trafic, 85% of which is Google. I for one would be very happy not to have so many eggs in one basket. I vote yes for a BillHoo!
There was a thread I recall here at WebmasterWorld a number of years ago (around 2000-2001) saying that it was reputed that Alta had just about everything related to search patented. It's probably an outdated concept at this point in time, years later, but there's still a wealth of technology for both search and advertising.
I can't see this being about search, but rather about traffic and market share. Yahoo is the grand-daddy of high traffic portals and always has been. Others have tried and come and gone by the wayside, but only Yahoo as a portal has continued to grow over the years. Recall the strategy publicly stated (by Semel) a few years back, about their model being to buy up properties and bring them in-house rather than outsourcing. What don't they have onsite?
Microsoft's Kevin Johnson on proposed Yahoo acquisition [blog.seattletimes.nwsource.com]
Our two companies share a common passion for innovation and creating opportunity and great user experiences through technology. And that passion for innovation is really at the core, and so together I think we're going to redefine how people and businesses think about information in the new age of the Internet and I think that common passion is really a glue that helps us bring the workforces together.
poach a few search contracts with some big ISP's and big sites
It's already AT&T Yahoo DSL (or dial-up), including ISP web based mail, which runs ads: not in the emails themselves, but in the subscriber interface. The ISP homepage is Yahoo/AT&T, just a branded version of the Yahoo site. The advertising reach is already huge, just with the default alone.
I can't believe this will slip past both the EU and US antitrust law enforcement agencies. In an ogilopoly, companies #2 and 3 merging really has the same effect as companies #1 and 2, or #1 and 3.
Probably true in the US. In the EU, Yahoo and MS search are pretty much irrelevant. Nobody will mind when the blind and the lame join forces. The same goes for their share in advertising, me thinks.
Microsoft buying Yahoo is better than Google doing it and owning 90% of search!
I agree with that! Yahoo has been on the ropes for quite some time and is not really so viable on its own. Microsoft has never really been able to make inroads into search or online advertising. Taking over Yahoo search makes perfect sense and will actually finally produce a real competitor to Google. The first thing that MS will do is start advertising its search and hammering away at Google's user base. It's the natural consolidation of search into two major rivals as the industry is maturing. I think having a real alternative to Google will be a good thing for webmasters overall, because now we have none.
I think that illustrates the difference between Microsoft and Google. Microsoft is buying the brand, because they think that's all that matters: "the perceived value of the content is zero" as one analyst said. They think people will use Yahoo because people are too stupid to notice something has changed.
Google is buying a business, because it's well run. Content is all that matters, and the money will follow. They DON'T fantasize about getting 90% of search by spreading their brand across the trademarks of previously failed portals, because they know people who are dissatisfied with their results can always go to MSN, um, live, um, whatever alias for "mud" Microsoft's PR flunkies like today.
Content is all that matters, and the money will follow.
Which Google acquisitions have resulted in money following?
Google's mainstay and almost sole profit center continues to be search. I don't see anything else they've done contributing significantly to their bottom line.
Perhaps they have saved some time to market with some of their technology acquisitions related to their core business, but the rest is fluff that hasn't brought them profits.