Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ:MSFT) today announced that it has made a proposal to the Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ:YHOO) 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. Microsoft’s proposal would allow the Yahoo! shareholders to elect to receive cash or a fixed number of shares of Microsoft common stock, with the total consideration payable to Yahoo! shareholders consisting of one-half cash and one-half Microsoft common stock. The offer represents a 62 percent premium above the closing price of Yahoo! common stock on Jan. 31, 2008.
There’s been talk for a number of years now that Microsoft has been pumping millions into the development of a search engine that would tip Google off the top of the mount. Perhaps they’ve decided now to acquire the next best thing, Yahoo, and see what they can do with this platform that has the brand association they need. If they are successful, I wouldn’t be surprised to see them infuse Yahoo with new tools they may have in development that would give Google a run for their money. Here’s what Ray Ozzie, Chief Software Architect at Microsoft has said;
“The combination of these two great teams would enable us to jointly deliver a broad range of new experiences to our customers that neither of us would have achieved on our own.”
I think Google has Microsft running scared with the introduction of Google Docs and Spreadsheets etc. Interesting times we live in – can’t wait to see how things unfold.