Warren Buffett Interested In Yahoo Because Why Not At This Point

Oh, so we're dragging Warren Buffett into this now? Cool cool.
Author:
Updated:
Original:

Say what you will about Marissa Mayer's Dadaist crisis management technique during the fall of Yahoo, but it's hard to say that "Evita Breadsticks" hasn't somehow curated a tragicomic epic with a multitude of brain-breaking plot twists and an incredible list of guest stars.

Buffett.Mayer

We've had everyone from Veronica Vain to Marie Antoinette to Barry Diller play a role, from Marissa's predecessor to her former rival at Google. Frank Quattrone has popped up alongside a bevy of hedge funds and big banks.

It seemed like anyone who was anyone grabbed a part of Yahoo's strange song of woe...well almost everyone. There was on special someone who had kept his quasi-mythical name away from the purple meltdown, until now:

Berkshire Hathaway Inc Chairman Warren Buffett is backing a consortium vying for Yahoo Inc's internet assets that includes Quicken Loans Inc founder Dan Gilbert, people familiar with the matter said on Friday.

Reuters reported Saturday that the Oracle of Omaha has had his interest piqued by whatever's left of Marissa's company. This bit of news is not just a fun narrative twist but incredible news for Team Mayer, who can say that the great old owl of American finance is interested in her embattled brand.

But it's bad news for anyone who thought they would be getting a deal on Yahoo...

The consortium's participation in the sale process also represents a challenge to U.S. telecommunications carrier Verizon Communications Inc, whose deal to acquire AOL last year for $4.4 billion has made it a favorite to prevail in its bid for Yahoo's assets among industry analysts.

Buffett jumped on CNBC this morning to elaborate why hey's getting in on the Yahoo action, and his reasoning seems less along the lines of "Yahoo is awesome!" than "How bad can it be?"

"I'm an enormous admirer of Dan and what he has accomplished in Quicken Loans‎. Yahoo is not the type of thing I'd ever be an equity partner in. I don't know the business and wouldn't know how to evaluate it, but if Dan needed financing, with proper terms and protections, we would be a possible financing help," Buffett told CNBC.

The last time Buffett commented publicly on Yahoo was weeks ago and it was in reference to Marissa's compensation package. Spoiler Alert: He hates it:

Severance numbers just generally throughout American industry are a little crazy…If I were the American shareholder, I think I would get a little irritated with some of these goodbye kisses. 

Sounds like if the Oracle of Omaha ends up as part of the deal to buy Yahoo, he's gonna have a hard time puckering up for Marissa.

Exclusive: Warren Buffett, Quicken Loans founder in Yahoo bid - sources [Reuters]

Warren Buffett: I may help bankroll billionaire Dan Gilbert's bid to buy Yahoo [CNBC]

Related