With Microsoft's pursuit of Google...I mean Yahoo...going into the end game, some are questioning the wisdom of plunking down about $45 billion on such a prize. Last week, Robert Breza, an analyst with RBC Capital Market, made the case for Microsoft chipping away at Google's search/ad lead in a less desperate manner with its adCenter platform, and instead investing the billions in business applications and social networking. Michael A. Cusumano, professor at the Sloan School of Management at MIT, recommends that Microsoft stay closer to its business software roots and acquire SAP. This advice won'… Read more
Steve Ballmer's getting a lot of (unsolicited) advice these days about what Microsoft ought to do. You can find one of the more thoughtful contributions in this morning's New York Times. Check out Randall Stross's piece in the Times, where he quotes MIT professor Michael Cusumano, warning against acquiring an "old-style Internet asset, in decline, and at a premium."
Instead, Cusamano makes offers an intriguing alternative: forget about Yahoo and go after SAP.
"It's not an outlandish idea. The two companies held merger talks in late 2003, and perhaps since then, too. Microsoft … Read more
History never repeats itself exactly, but rereading Kevin Johnson's memo updating the troops on Microsoft's bid to buy Yahoo, I was struck by the contrast with another software mega-merger saga that dominated headlines 13 years earlier.
As we reported on Friday, Johnson, who heads up Microsoft's Platforms & Services division, detailed how a combination with Yahoo would have a tonic impact: Online advertising customers would gain a viable alternative to Google, while Microsoft would carve out a bigger piece of a nearly $80 billion market.
In June 1995, IBM stunned Lotus with a unsolicited $3 billion buyout … Read more
This weekend's NY Times article "Maybe Microsoft Should Stalk Different Prey" raises the point that perhaps Microsoft should reconsider the Yahoo acquisition to focus on what it knows, which is enterprise software.
New CNET Editor-in-Chief Dan Farber raises a different point in a post today--that there is still time for an internet land-grab and Microsoft should take this opportunity to nab Yahoo before it's too late.
Overall, I don't see the Yahoo acquisition paying immediate dividends. In fact, it's hard to see when it would pay off. Microsoft doesn't have the machine … Read more
A U.S. District judge in Seattle has ruled that consumers can move ahead with a class-action suit against Microsoft over how it advertised computers with Windows XP as capable of running Vista, according to an article by the Associated Press.
The suit claims that the labeling of computers as "Windows Vista Capable" misled consumers because many of the machines weren't powerful enough to run all of Vista's features, such as the Aero user interface, the AP said.
The federal judge certified the suit late Friday but narrowed its scope to whether the "Vista Capable&… Read more
I want so much to give Microsoft the benefit of the doubt, and then I read his goofy intransigence on Jim Zemlin's Linux Foundation blog and I can't help but shake my head in disgust. Microsoft can milk its 20th-century successes for a long time. For it to join the 21st Century, however, it needs Ballmer gone and someone like Ray Ozzie in charge.
Classic Ballmer:BRAD SMITH [Microsoft's general counsel]: With respect to other (commercial) distributors, and users, the clear message is that patent licenses will be freely available. STEVE BALLMER: Patents will be, not freely, will be available. BRAD SMITH: Readily available. STEVE BALLMER: Readily available for the right fee.
Will someone please get adult supervision for Ballmer? The company attempts to take a step forward and Ballmer can't quite get it that two steps backward might be a clever dance move but it makes for lame corporate strategy.… Read more
SAN JOSE--Microsoft will likely face an antitrust fight in Washington for its proposed $44.6 billion buyout of Yahoo, according to California Congresswoman Zoe Lofgren.
Lofgren (D-Calif.), whose home turf of Silicon Valley is abuzz with talk of a Microsoft-Yahoo merger, said Friday that she didn't want to say much on the topic, after being asked about it on a panel here at the Joint Venture: Silicon Valley Network conference.
But she said, "I'm pretty confident it will end up before the House Judiciary Committee."
Two Detroit pension funds have filed a shareholders lawsuit against Yahoo in the Delaware Chancery Court, according to reports Friday.
The lawsuit, filed by the a Detroit public employees pension fund and a Detroit firefighters and police pension fund, accused the Internet search pioneer of stonewalling Microsoft's unsolicited buyout offer, initially valued at $44.6 billion on February 1.
"Yahoo's directors cannot 'just say no' indefinitely to legitimate acquisition offers when the effect of that decision is to deny shareholder choice in the face of non-coercive and economically beneficial bid--especially where, as here, the bid may yet … Read more
Is flying through outer space from the comfort of your living room enough to make you cry?
It is for former Microsoft evangelist Robert Scoble. A couple weeks back he said on his blog that a new Microsoft technology made him cry. He didn't give many details, citing a confidentiality agreement, but he provided enough there for folks to connect the dots.