Santa Clara (CA) - Yahoo’s chief executive and co-founder Jerry Yang says he’s still willing to deal with Microsoft. According to an interview with Reuters, Yang says he has "mixed feelings" about the recent collapse of talks over the weekend, but blamed the breakdown on Microsoft. Yang added that he’s leaving the door open and that there’s just a disagreement over price.
According to Yang, it was Microsoft who walked away from the table on Saturday. This effectively ended negotiations and subsequently sent Yahoo’s stock tumbling on Monday morning to end at $24.37 by the end of the trading day. Some analysts expected the stock to hit $19/share, but some investors believe there’s still a chance of a deal.
Yang and the Yahoo board believed the company was worth $37/share, but Microsoft negotiators disagreed and stuck to $33/share. After hours of negotiation, Microsoft took a page from the ultimate negotiation handbook and walked away.
According to the Wall Street Journal and other publications, some of Yahoo’s major shareholders are hopping mad that Yang didn’t take the offer. Gordorn Crawford, a portfolio manager with Crawford Capital Research Global, told the Journal that he was extremely disappointed with the board and that he was comfortable with the $33-$34 price point. Crawford Capital and its related companies own 16% of Yahoo stock.
Some shareholders believe Yang is biased against any sale because he co-founded the company. Yang disagrees with this sentiment and has publically stated that he just wants Microsoft to pay a fair price.
The Yahoo shareholder meeting will be held in July and you can be sure Yang and the rest of the board will get an earful from shareholders.