December 4, 2008

Yahoo! shares jump on bid reports

Yahoo! shares rose on reports that former AOL executive Jonathan Miller was trying to raise money to buy the company, but a deal is unlikely, an observer said.

A sum capable of purchasing the Yahoo! would be a very hard number to raise even in an effervescent financial market, said Roger McNamee, of Elevation Partners, a Silicon Valley private equity firm, The New York Times reported Thursday.

A deal was unlikely in the current market, where there does not appear to be any debt available for any cause, let alone Yahoo!, McNamee said.

In a Wall Street Journal report, Miller was said to be talking to private equities and foreign wealth funds to raise about $30 billion to purchase Yahoo!

The company's shares rose 7 percent on the news, the Times said.

If a deal from Miller is not forthcoming, the news could still prompt Microsoft Corp. to make a move, Internet analyst Sandeep Aggarwal said.

If Microsoft sees another strategic alternative developing, that might pressure them to move faster. It creates option value for Yahoo! and options never hurt, Aggarwal said.

Microsoft has repeatedly denied it remains interested in purchasing Yahoo!