Feeds

Gobble! some! Yahoo! now! – slurp! the! rest! later!

Investors mull taste test

Top three mobile application threats

More rumours that private equity might be the route for Yahoo!'s buyout surfaced today: a report suggests firms including KKR and TPG Capital are thinking of buying a little slice of Yahoo! in order to slurp the whole thing later.

The firms could buy minority stakes of up to 20 per cent in the troubled web firm and then possibly team up with co-founders Jerry Yang and David Filo, who between them own 9.5 per cent of the company, people with knowledge of the situation told Reuters.

These companies have already signed confidentiality agreements with Yahoo! so they won't be saying anything about it themselves, but the sources say grabbing a morsel now will make it easier to gobble the whole thing later when finance markets open up a bit. While they're waiting for the readies to be ready, a smaller stake could give them a seat on the board.

The prospect of Yahoo!'s co-founders cosying up with some private equity firms to get control of the company is not sitting well with some of the existing investors.

Daniel Loeb, head of investment house Third Point, which is the second largest investor in the web firm, released a letter at the start of the week saying he was "deeply concerned" by reports that private equity firms might get control of Yahoo!

"More troubling are reports that Mr Yang is engaging in one-off discussions with private equity firms, presumably because it is in his best personal interests to do so. The Board and the Strategic Committee should not have permitted Mr Yang to engage in these discussions, particularly given his ineptitude in dealing with the Microsoft negotiations to purchase the Company in 2008,” his letter read.

If this sort of deal went ahead, the risk for the private equity firms involved, and the existing investors, would be that the company would once more be relying on its existing management to turn it around. Essentially, the minority stake buy would give the company money and breathing space to try to change its current losing strategies into winning ones.

The sources also said today that other buyout businesses including Blackstone Group, Providence Equity, Bain Capital and Hellman & Friedman are holding out on signing the keep-schtum contracts because it would limit their ability to partner up with companies like Alibaba Group.

Yahoo! isn't making it easy for any suitor to get close to it by imposing these non-disclosure agreements, which mean once they've thrown their hat in the ring, they're stuck on their own or with whomever they first went in with.

Usually, companies that fancy buying a firm have the opportunity to strike up partnerships if they find they don't like the option of going it alone or it turns out to be too expensive or risky to carry on their own. At other times, one or more partner may decide to opt out while the other is still interested if they can get a new buddy.

With an NDA, once the buyer says they're interested, they can't talk about terms or finances or how Yahoo!'s doing with any potential partners. ®

Application security programs and practises

More from The Register

next story
BBC goes offline in MASSIVE COCKUP: Stephen Fry partly muzzled
Auntie tight-lipped as major outage rolls on
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
Nadella: Apps must run on ALL WINDOWS – PCs, slabs and mobes
Phone egg, meet desktop chicken - your mother
White? Male? You work in tech? Let us guess ... Twitter? We KNEW it!
Grim diversity numbers dumped alongside Facebook earnings
Microsoft: We're making ONE TRUE WINDOWS to rule us all
Enterprise, Windows still power firm's shaky money-maker
HP, Microsoft prove it again: Big Business doesn't create jobs
SMEs get lip service - what they need is dinner at the Club
ITC: Seagate and LSI can infringe Realtek patents because Realtek isn't in the US
Land of the (get off scot) free, when it's a foreign owner
Dude, you're getting a Dell – with BITCOIN: IT giant slurps cryptocash
1. Buy PC with Bitcoin. 2. Mine more coins. 3. Goto step 1
There's NOTHING on TV in Europe – American video DOMINATES
Even France's mega subsidies don't stop US content onslaught
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.