Yahoo (YHOO) CEO Carol Bartz now says it was “a mistake” that she declared not long ago that a Microsoft-Yahoo search deal would have to come with “boatloads of money.”
“I made a mistake. I was never interested in doing it for upfront money. That doesn’t help me operate a business,” Bartz told the New York Times. The Times explains: “She noted that such a payment would have had significant tax consequences while contributing only $3 million in annual interest to Yahoo’s bottom line.”
The Times report also puts a number on the layoffs that could come as a result of the deal: “as many as 400.” Bartz admitted last week that Yahoo would inevitably have to lay off some search employees, as well as sending some to work at Microsoft.
And the report includes some nice nuances about the negotiations, such as Bartz’s insisting that Yahoo’s promotion of Bing on search results is text only, not a logo. And that Ballmer started pursuing the deal as fast as he could: “He called my first day,” Bartz said. “I told him: ‘Go away. I haven’t even found the bathroom.’ “
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