After Microsoft’s unsolicited bid for Yahoo last week, it seems everyone has their theories about what is actually going to happen. Will Yahoo accept the offer and piss-off most of their employees? Will they hold up their middle finger and realize that they need to get their act together? The only thing we know so far is that there may be alternative outcomes beyond MSFTYHOO.
- Private Equity Buyout – There’s a slight chance that a private equity firm could purchase Yahoo with the hope of reselling down the road, but it’s a slim one. The credit crisis in America has led to tighter restrictions so we’ve seen fewer private equity acquisitions lately because of this.
- Apple – CEO Yang has been an admirer of Steve Jobs in the past (and even came on stage to introduce the iPhone) and at least one report has speculated on an Apple buyout. The problem is that Apple doesn’t have enough cash on hand and I can’t see Jobs wanting to blow their cash stash on a company that doesn’t really benefit them. Now if Apple bought Adobe that would make more sense, but Apple Yahoo?
- Google – Google has reached out to Yahoo in an attempt to outline what a bad decision the MSFT acquisition would be, but it seems Google might be holding all the cards. It’s been noted that most of Yahoo’s core services run on FreeBSD, Apache, and other open source technologies, and Microsoft’s core services run on Windows Server and Microsoft-centric technologies. If Microsoft successfully acquires Yahoo then it might tie up their collective engineering resources for a very long time trying to integrate their platforms, and that would allow Google to really push forward with its Office-killing web applications. People are saying that Google might want to acquire Yahoo, but I think Google’s secretly hoping the acquisition happens so that Google appears to be the most nimble of all technology companies.