Earlier this morning Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) announced that it had placed an offer before the Yahoo! (NASDAQ:YHOO) board to acquire all outstanding shares of Yahoo! at $31 per share, payable in the form of $31 in cash or 0.9509 of a share of Microsoft common stock, subject to the proration that one half of Yahoo shares will be acquired for cash and the other half for Microsoft shares. Based on yesterday's closing price of Microsoft shares - $32.60 - the deal valued Yahoo! at around $44.6bn. Predictably, Yahoo! shares shot up by 48% to close at $28.38 while Microsoft shares fell around 7% to close at $30.45. Right-now, that values Yahoo! at around $43bn.
Many are interpreting this a sign of Microsoft's desperation in the battle of dominance against Google (NASDAQ:GOOG). On the Yahoo! side, it's definitely a big boost given their dismal outlook and impending layoffs, announced just three days ago. The Yahoo! co-founders will make a lot of money from this deal:
It's still far from being a done deal. The offer price is below Yahoo!'s 52-wk high of $34.08 which they hit less than four months ago. Post-acquisition integration of the companies is also no trivial task. As an example, Microsoft will have to choose between Yahoo! News and MSNBC due to their exclusivity agreements with NBC. With such a large acquisition there are also the inevitable cultural differences which are best summed by this picture: