Jonathan Miller, the former AOL CEO, is making a powerplay to buy part of Yahoo or raise the money to acquire the entire company reports Jessica Vascellaro of the Wall Street Journal. According to the (other) Journal, Miller is talking to private investors and gathering other forms of funding in an effort to obtain Yahoo for $20 to $22 a share; which would mean raising somewhere around $30 billion in order to do so.
Yahoo stock is at $11.47 today, after a 7% increase over its opening value of $10.50 this morning.
In May, Microsoft had signaled that it was ready to takeover Yahoo at $33 a share. Big difference. (good work Mr. Yang).
Sources close to Yahoo expressed deep skepticism that Mr. Miller would succeed in lining up investors. Indeed, given banks’ reluctance to lend money right now, financing a deal of this size would be extremely difficult, even from deep-pocketed sovereign wealth funds.
An investment in Yahoo would also be extremely risky in the current advertising market and amid the company’s ongoing search for a new chief executive. Sovereign investors have lost money on many large investments in the past year and may be reluctant to make a bet on a company with Yahoo’s challenges.