It used to be that the Microsoft-Yahoo clash seemed, at its root, a "personality conflict." Yang and Ballmer's war of words was, at one point, so pointed that Ballmer was said unable to consider an acquisition of any kind while Yang was still leading the firm. Or, that was the press version, anyhow. Around this time Microsoft spent a period in that Texas Hold'em sort of intentions limbo. When strong, attempt to appear weak, when weak, attempt to appear strong. Ballmer didn't want to advertise the degree to which he lusted after Yahoo. Nor did anyone at Microsoft want to admit that the firm was (is) dangerously close to obsolescence and irrelevance in the face of Googlesque economies (though various classes of writers literally fell over each other to point this out). So, what exactly are we to make of this:
Microsoft Corp. is no longer interested in buying all of Yahoo Inc., CEO Steve Ballmer said Wednesday, though he told shareholders that the company would still be "very open" to a collaboration on Internet search. His comments sent Yahoo shares diving by 12 percent.
"Let me be clear," Ballmer said at Microsoft's annual shareholder meeting. "We are done with all acquisition discussions with Yahoo."
Yahoo spurned a $47.5 billion takeover offer from Microsoft in May, and later rejected Microsoft's bid to buy only its search engine. Ballmer has said repeatedly of late that the buyout remains off the table, though a search-related deal is possible.
Ballmer dismisses Yahoo buyout but open on search [Yahoo Finance (Ha! Ha!)]