Microsoft chickened out, Berkshire shareholders partying

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May 04 2008
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BBill Gates chickened out! Steve Balmer chickened out! Microsoft Corp does not have the balls to proceed with the takeover. Yahoo won the war and Google is rejoicing. If Microsoft is the real giant that is hungry and passionate enough to fight Google Inc. heads on and obsessed with owning Yahoo in the first place, then just pay the damn $37 a share for Yahoo and start a new chapter by giving Google Inc. a run for their money. But I guess Steve Balmer and Bill Gates is no match for Jerry Yang and David Filo, let alone Sergey Brin and Larry Page. Sack this bald head Ballmer, you hear me Bill Gates!!!

Yes, Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT, stock) withdrew its $42.3 billion bid to buy Yahoo Inc. after a personal meeting between Yahoo founders Jerry Yang and David with Steve Balmer. It appears Microsoft was willing to pay $47.5 billion or $33 per share, up from the bid’s current value of $29.40 per share and not a penny more. Yahoo’s board was demanding $37 a share while Jerry Yang wanted $38 a share. The fun was over after Steve Balmer chickened out from a proxy battle he was screaming at Yahoo’s face not long ago. What a letdown!

Therefore, it is expected Yahoo Inc.’s (Nasdaq: YHOO, stock) stock price to plunge while Microsoft Corp’s to rise when the stock market opens on Monday. But the billion dollar question remains if Jerry Yang has the magic bullet to revitalize the company and rest assured the shareholders will be sniffing over his shoulder more often from now onwards. Microsoft can always launch another round of acquisition later in the future, I guess. Maybe it was a strategy to pull down Yahoo stock price before the actual hostile goes live. Hmmm …


Meanwhile, Buffett and Munger were having fun answering questions at Berkshire Hathaway’s (NYSE: BRK.A, stock) annual meeting on Saturday. To solve global warming problem, Munger recommended eating a Dairy Queen Blizzard a day and for health-care, the 84-year-old genius told the shareholders to eat more See’s candy. What about U.S. current economic crisis? Charlie Munger said the only solution is to put Buffett in charge of the Federal Reserve. Hey, that’s a great idea, if only this is for real and not Berkshire’s annual cartoon.

As expected, Buffett refused to publicly identify the candidates to take over after he’s gone – only to say the company’s board has three internal candidates for CEO and four external candidates who could take over managing the company’s $75 billion stock portfolio and $35.6 billion cash. The complete video of the annual meeting is not available yet but the above is what you can see at the moment.

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