Breaking: Microsoft offers $44.6 billion for Yahoo

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MSNBC, a service between Microsoft and NBC Universal, via AP; is reporting that Microsoft is set to buy Yahoo for $44.6 billion. This announcement comes as a surprise to many, with Microsoft looking new ways to compete with Google.

In the US, we could see that Yahoo! News could be replaced with MSNBC. However, in Australia – there is a different situation. MSN currently have a partnership deal with the Nine Network; with Yahoo having a partnership with the Seven Network. Nine and Seven have been television rivals and the new buyout could see Seven or Nine being dumped.

In a letter to the board of directors, Steve Ballmer said that the company was ready to offer $31 per share; representing 64% more than Yahoo’s stock price on Thursday.

“In February 2007, I received a letter from your chairman indicating the view of the Yahoo board that “now is not the right time from the perspective of our shareholders to enter into discussions regarding an acquisition transaction,” Ballmer wrote, according to AP.

“According to that letter, the principal reason for this view was the Yahoo board’s confidence in the ‘potential upside’ if management successfully executed on a reformulated strategy based on certain operational initiatives, such as Project Panama, and a significant organizational realignment.”

Yahoo is set to dump some of its employees, with Microsoft believes the takeover will be complete in the second half of 2008.

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