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Report: Microsoft Proxy Fight Against Yahoo! Still on

"P

ROXY fight" is not a term that anyone but the technical literature deserves credit for. In fact, the term "proxy fight" is a very conventional one and it is regularly echoed by the mainstream media. This was already seen in the past when Microsoft threatened with what The Times called a "proxy war" and later came Carl Icahn who agitated Yahoo* and was among the pressures which had Jerry Yang step down. Yang's replacement is still a process in the making.

Yahoo! Inc. has narrowed a list of candidates for a new chief executive officer to Autodesk Inc. Executive Chairwoman Carol Bartz, Yahoo President Susan Decker and another executive, a person familiar with the matter said.


For previous coverage of Yahoo-Microsoft, consider:



Today's most interesting report is a few days old and it suggests that Microsoft is once again agitating Yahoo, albeit indirectly.

Investment Group Makes Run For Yahoo, Using Microsoft’s Money



Interest in troubled Internet giant Yahoo has not waned, it just took a break for the holidays. A group of well known Silicon Valley executives and top investment bankers are putting together a Yahoo takeover deal that would be financed largely from debt supplied by Microsoft, we’ve learned from sources with knowledge of the proposed transaction.

Under the terms of the proposed deal, the investment group would make a takeover bid for Yahoo at a relatively low premium of around 20% to its current price of around $13 per share, valuing the company at just over $20 billion.


There were many remarks about this, even in 'big' sites. Dina Bass, whom we mentioned in the past because she coordinated Windows Vista coverage with Microsoft employees, has released this report which denies the above, using the words of Microsoft employees.

Microsoft Corp. isn’t holding talks to finance a new bid for Yahoo! Inc., a person familiar with Microsoft’s plans said, responding to a blog report.

The TechCrunch site said today that an investment group led by Silicon Valley executives and bankers is putting together a bid for Yahoo that would be funded largely by Microsoft. The software company would also acquire Yahoo’s Internet-search business under the deal, the blog said.


If the claims from TechCrunch are correct, of course Microsoft would deny them. Such things are supposed to be kept secret. It's just too damaging and given the sources of this denial, the legitimacy of this Bloomberg report remains slightly questionable.

Ballmer has just denied once again that he is interested in Yahoo.

The mooted acquisition of Yahoo Inc. (YHOO) by Microsoft Corp. (MSFT) is "a thing of the past," Microsoft Chief Executive Steve Ballmer said in an interview to be screened Thursday.


He is probably just trying to knock down the stock so that he can sweep up what he wants (userbase) a little later on -- and cheaply.

CNBC reported that Microsoft first proposed a deal in which it would get control of Yahoo's search business last year, after dropping the full acquisition offer.


A few days ago we also mentioned how Microsoft grabbed a little piece of Yahoo (its top personnel). Here is another report about it.

Microsoft has hired Yahoo executive Kim James Woo to run its operations in South Korea, the company said Thursday.


Agitation of Yahoo! pays off for Microsoft whether it buys the company, acquires portions of it, or none of it. And that's just extreme (or predatory) capitalism in its ugliest of forms. In extremity, it's counter productive to competition and consumerism. What ever happened to market regulation and a basic sense of ethics? Without these, markets become self destructive and give a bad name to capitalism as a whole, as Microsoft has done for decades.

Capitalism



____ * Icahn communicated directly with Microsoft, so he was not exactly a lone wolf.

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