According to Market Watch, Microsoft Corp. offered to buy search-engine operator Yahoo Inc. for $31 a share, or $44.6 billion, in an effort to better compete with online-advertising juggernaut Google Inc.
Microsoft executives acknowledged that Google is the 800-pound gorilla of the search market and said a partnership with Yahoo would create a stronger rival.
“We’re very, very confident that this is the right path for Microsoft and Yahoo,” Microsoft Chief Executive Steve Ballmer said in a conference call Friday morning.
In an appeal to Yahoo employees, who are nervous about pending layoffs, Microsoft said it would offer significant retention packages to Yahoo engineers, key leaders and employees across all disciplines.
[UPDATE] This story is dominating the news today. I could point to a million opinions, but I’ll narrow it down for the info snackers.
Silicon Alley Insider believes a counter offer from a major private-equity firm may be in the works.
Kara Swisher says Yahoo! insiders were stunned by the public announcement this morning and consider it a hostile bid.