When Yahoo Inc.'s price tag is $44.6-billion (U.S.) - and that's the starting bid - it is no wonder that few firms have been touted as potential white knights, able to rescue Yahoo from the clutches of cash-rich Microsoft. But what about News Corp.?
Douglas A. McIntyre makes a nice pitch for the idea in his blog for 24/7 Wall St. Oh sure, even after sifting through the lint in its pockets, News Corp. would not be able to come up with a bigger, better bid for Yahoo, and selling off some of Yahoo's overseas divisions would not ease the financial pain. But with Google Inc.'s help, maybe something could happen.
Mr. McIntyre writes: "Google Inc. (GOOG) would almost certainly advance News Corp. a few years of money against having the exclusive search franchise for Yahoo. Google has already given News Corp. guarantees from search results sold on MySpace. What could News Corp. get for the rights? Probably $4-billion a year. A five-year advance would give News Corp. another $20-billion for a takeover fund. Murdoch could also cut out most of the R&D spending and staff at Yahoo, pushing operating income way up.
And, "Google would get what it wants. It will have pushed Microsoft to the back of the search engine line. Murdoch would own the world's largest Internet platform."