VZW Search in Play, MS Spurns Yahoo

Posted by Sam Churchill on

Microsoft, capitalizing on Google’s regulatory snarl, is working to steal a search deal with Verizon Wireless, the Wall Street Journal said.

Microsoft is reportedly offering a sweeter deal to put its search service and related advertising on Verizon phones, the paper said. Microsoft is offering more generous revenue sharing and a guarantee of higher payments to Verizon, the paper said, citing people familiar with the matter.

Google has been in discussions for months with Verizon. But Google has been dealing with the U.S. Department of Justice’s review of its proposed Yahoo partnership.

This week Google pulled out of a search advertising partnership with Yahoo due to regulatory objections.

Verizon Wireless is considering both companies’ offers and hasn’t made a final decision, though it is leaning toward Microsoft, the WSJ sources told the paper.

In other news, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer said Friday that Microsoft is “not interested” in making a new offer for Yahoo, despite Yahoo’s share price currently sitting at less than half what Microsoft initially offered.

Speaking at a Committee for Economic Development of Australia lunch in Sydney on Friday, Ballmer said: “Look, we made an offer, we made another offer. It was clear that Yahoo didn’t want to sell the business to us, and we moved on.”

Ballmer said other deals with Yahoo had also been unsuccessful. “We tried at one point to do a partnership around search, not advertising. That didn’t work either, so we moved on, and they moved on. We are not interested in going back and re-looking at an acquisition,” he said. “I don’t know why they would be either, frankly.”

Microsoft abandoned an unsolicited $47.5 billion takeover bid for Yahoo in May, with Yahoo rejecting its $33-per-share offer as too low. This morning Yahoo shares fell $2.05 to $11.91, while Microsoft shares were up 1.92 percent at $21.28.

Posted by Sam Churchill on Friday, November 7th, 2008 at 8:34 am .

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