Recently, Microsoft and Carl Icahn got quite cozy, and the budding relationship spawned a new Yahoo offer. Despite Yahoo's insistence that they remain open to an offer from Microsoft, they have, once again, rejected the software giant.
The new deal would split up Yahoo, selling the search portion to Microsoft. That sale would be overseen by Carl Icahn and his board.
The new proposal was rejected for the following four reasons:
- Yahoo!'s existing business plus its recently signed commercial agreement with Google has superior financial value and less complexity and risk than the Microsoft/Icahn proposal.
- The Microsoft/Icahn proposal would preclude a potential sale of all of Yahoo! for a full and fair price, including a control premium.
- The major component of the overall value per share asserted by Microsoft/Icahn would be in Yahoo!'s remaining non-search businesses which would be overseen by Mr. Icahn's slate of directors, which has virtually no working knowledge of Yahoo!'s businesses
- The Microsoft/Icahn proposal would require the immediate replacement of the current Board and removal of the top management team at Yahoo!. The Yahoo! Board believes these moves would destabilize Yahoo! for the up to the one year it would take to gain regulatory approval for this deal
Roy Bostock, Chairman of Yahoo! said, "This odd and opportunistic alliance of Microsoft and Carl Icahn has anything but the interests of Yahoo!'s stockholders in mind. Clearly, Microsoft, having failed to advance in search, is aligning with the short-term objectives of Mr. Icahn to coerce Yahoo! into selling its core strategic search assets on terms that are highly advantageous to Microsoft, but disadvantageous to Yahoo! stockholders. Yahoo's Board of Directors will not allow that to happen. Yahoo!'s Board remains open to any transaction that delivers full value to our stockholders - we just do not believe such a transaction should be dictated by Microsoft and a single short-term investor."
What do you think of Microsoft's latest offer? Was it just posturing in advance of Yahoo's Aug 1 shareholders meeting? Let us know in the comments.