Feeds

Yahoo! pulls Alibaba out of hat, posts big Q1 profit jump

Enough to fend off Microsoft?

Top three mobile application threats

Jerry Yang today hailed Yahoo!'s "extraordinary" Q1 results, citing the besieged firm's ability to execute, against a backdrop of economic uncertainty and Microsoft's unwelcome bid to buy the company.

And extraordinary they were, as the Yahoo! CEO claims, with net income jumping massively to $542m, or 37 cents a share (Net income, Q1 '07: $142.4m). But performance and execution had nothing to do with the uplift - which came courtesy of a $401m non-cash equity gain. This was a recognition of the value crystallised through last year's IPO of Alibaba.com, the Chinese ecommerce firm in which it has an indirect stake through a 40 per cent ownership of Alibaba, the parent company.

Back at Yahoo!, earnings from operations fell year over year to $120.6m (Q1 07: $169m).

Other financial metrics were pretty good too. Gross revenue was $1.8bn, up nine per cent on last year (Q1 07: $1.67bn). Net revenues, excluding traffic acquisitions costs, climbed 14 per cent to $1.35bn (Q1 07: $1.18bn).

But is this enough to fend off Microsoft?

On February 1, Microsoft offered $44.6bn in cash or shares for Yahoo!. Since then the value of the offer has declined, thanks to a drop in Microsoft's own share price. Yahoo! has scrambled to find a white knight, either to merge with (AOL), to sell its inventory (Google) or to buy the company outright (News Corp.). None of the company's would-be suitors can match Microsoft's money. Not even Google. And Yahoo! shareholders appear to have little appetite in seeing their company remain independent.

In the earnings conference call today, Yahoo!'s Yang said the company was "open to all alternatives, including a sale to Microsoft". But he re-iterated the company's belief that the Microsoft bid is too low-ball for a "one of a kind global franchise". He characterised the firm's search for strategic alternatives to Microsoft as "expeditious".

Microsoft shows no signs yet of offering a better price. The original offer incorporated a big premium to facilitate a friendly and quick takeover, Microsoft boss Steve Ballmer declared earlier this month. In an open letter to the Yahoo! board, he voiced frustration with what Microsoft sees as dilatoriness and refusal to come to the negotiating table.

Microsoft has imposed a deadline on the Yahoo! board to agree a deal by the weekend. Or it will kick off a proxy battle to install its own directors.

Let's see what next week brings. ®

3 Big data security analytics techniques

More from The Register

next story
Dropbox defends fantastically badly timed Condoleezza Rice appointment
'Nothing is going to change with Dr. Rice's appointment,' file sharer promises
Audio fans, prepare yourself for the Second Coming ... of Blu-ray
High Fidelity Pure Audio – is this what your ears have been waiting for?
Record labels sue Pandora over vintage song royalties
Companies want payout on recordings made before 1972
MtGox chief Karpelès refuses to come to US for g-men's grilling
Bitcoin baron says he needs another lawyer for FinCEN chat
Zucker punched: Google gobbles Facebook-wooed Titan Aerospace
Up, up and away in my beautiful balloon flying broadband-bot
Apple DOMINATES the Valley, rakes in more profit than Google, HP, Intel, Cisco COMBINED
Cook & Co. also pay more taxes than those four worthies PLUS eBay and Oracle
Number crunching suggests Yahoo! US is worth less than nothing
China and Japan holdings worth more than entire company
prev story

Whitepapers

SANS - Survey on application security programs
In this whitepaper learn about the state of application security programs and practices of 488 surveyed respondents, and discover how mature and effective these programs are.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.