Microhoo At One Week 1: Decision Nears? Yahoo Brand To Survive?

Microsoft's Yahoo White Wedding

Has it only been a week since Microsoft thought it was a nice day for a Yahoo wedding? Indeed, so. And what’s happened since? Rumors that Yahoo is nearing a decision, while Microsoft’s Steve Ballmer seems to want to encourage his potential new employees that a Yahoo brand will survive. Let’s do the news.

Yahoo Board To Determine Fate Of Company Today from TechCrunch suggest today is the day that Yahoo will make a decision:

Sources have indicated to us that Yahoo has scheduled a special board of directors meeting on Friday to determine, effectively, the fate of the company.

There’s been much speculation over the last week if anyone could save Yahoo from Microsoft. Could Google jump in to buy Yahoo? Probably not because of competition laws, but it does seem like a partnership with the company might be the only real alternative. Below, stories over the past week on the idea of Google as Yahoo’s savior, plus Google’s concerns that Microsoft might win Yahoo’s hand:

How about others? Today’s big news in that department seems to be that Softbank — which owns a big chunk of Yahoo Japan — which is a money making powerhouse — doesn’t plan to sell its stake to Microsoft but rather is playing wait-and-see. TechCrunch sees that as a sign that Softbank won’t dive in to fight Microsoft. Softbank says Yahoo Japan holding will not be sold from the Financial Times has more on that story.

Anyone? Anyone? News Corp has said no in stories we’ve previously covered, as have other likely candidates. But here are some other stories from the past week on that topic:

One biggest challenge to the deal may be if Microsoft’s shares drop. Since the deal is tied to the share price, Microsoft Bid for Yahoo Drops To $29.50 a Share from Silicon Alley Insider noted that the initial value of the deal has already gone down. That could put shareholders on both sides off.

Another challenge is that Yahoo employees are a proud lot with execs that TechCrunch says will do anything to thwart a deal. I can certainly agree with that. It’s interesting to hear this in Will Yahoo! Feel the Love? from BusinessWeek:

Ballmer says: "Yahoo, the brand, will live."

In reality, Ballmer can’t say that at all. Microsoft was at pains to tell us that no specific decisions have been made — that they cannot be made until executives from both companies meet (if the deal goes ahead) and mutually decide what makes sense. Yahoo the brand might very well NOT live. Or it might live but certainly not be a flagship brand — though if Microsoft were wise, they’d certainly keep it a strong one.

The statement feels like a way for Ballmer to say to rebels in Yahoo not to worry over being assimilated. For more on morale in both companies, see the posts below:

As I’ve said, it’s been a week now. In addition to the stories above, here are others we’ve covered in the special Microhoo section of our SearchCap newsletter:

And in review, some key stories from us over the past week:

All these stories can also be found in our Microhoo section. And for more on today’s developments, see related discussion on Techmeme.

Related Topics: Channel: Industry | Microsoft & Yahoo Search Deal | Microsoft: Business Issues | Yahoo: Business Issues


About The Author: is a Founding Editor of Search Engine Land. He’s a widely cited authority on search engines and search marketing issues who has covered the space since 1996. Danny also serves as Chief Content Officer for Third Door Media, which publishes Search Engine Land and produces the SMX: Search Marketing Expo conference series. He has a personal blog called Daggle (and keeps his disclosures page there). He can be found on Facebook, Google + and microblogs on Twitter as @dannysullivan.

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