Microsoft, Icahn Reply To Yahoo’s Rejection

    July 14, 2008

Microsoft and Yahoo both employ intelligent, well-educated men and women.  Carl Icahn’s pretty sharp, too.  Recent acquisition dealings seem to have turned a great many people into finger-pointing fifth graders, though, and there’s been another salvo of letters and statements to support this argument.

Both corporations have called off negotiations before, of course, but on Saturday, Yahoo issued a release rejecting a new proposal from Microsoft.  Today, Microsoft and Icahn addressed some of Yahoo’s points, and we’ll start with the claim that the latest offer came with a 24-hour time limit.

Carl Icahn
 Carl Icahn

"At the time Microsoft submitted its enhanced proposal, Microsoft asked that Yahoo! confirm whether it would agree that the enhancements were sufficient to form the basis for the parties to engage in negotiations over the weekend," according to Microsoft’s press department.  "This discussion has been mischaracterized as a take it or leave it ultimatum, rather than a timetable in order to move forward to intensive negotiations."

As for Yahoo’s assertion that it’s willing to sell itself for $33 per share, Carl Icahn wrote, "In June, Microsoft apparently made a $33 per share offer for all of Yahoo! which was met with Yahoo countering at $37, thereby rejecting the $33 offer. . . .  It is hard to understand why it turned down $33 and is now willing to accept it.  It is the same obfuscation that is so prevalent in the rest of the press release.  DON’T BE FOOLED."

Regardless of who’s right and who’s wrong, August 1st can’t come soon enough.