At least two decisions were made at Yahoo’s board meeting yesterday, say the NYT’s Andrew Ross Sorkin and Miguel Helft: Yahoo (YHOO) will meet with both Microsft (MSFT) and Time Warner (TWX) next week.
As with much of the information about the Microsoft-Yahoo standoff that has appeared in the press, the board-meeting leaks seem carefully choreographed. The NYT notes, for example, that the board “authorised” the AOL and Yahoo meetings, phrasing that was probably designed to blunt the criticism in Steve Ballmer’s letter that the board hadn’t even authorised the company to negotiate with Microsoft.
The Microsoft meeting could be a sign that Yahoo is finally ready to negotiate, but more likely is intended to demonstrate that Yahoo’s board is acting reasonably and “exploring all its options.” The AOL meeting, meanwhile, serves the dual purpose of allowing Yahoo to continue to explore an AOL deal while also showing Microsoft that it’s serious about exploring one.
The AOL deal terms in this story remain the same as the early ones: AOL’s portal and ad network businesses valued at about $10 billion, in exchange for 20% of Yahoo.
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