Microsoft CFO Says Eying Hostile Deal for Yahoo

Microsoft is considering launching a hostile bid for Yahoo as early as next week if Yahoo does not begin talks soon, Chief Financial Officer Chris Liddell said on Thursday.


Liddell repeated a threat by Chief Executive Steve Ballmer on Wednesday to withdraw Microsoft's $31 a share cash and stock offer if Yahoo does not start negotiating. Yahoo management has "unrealistic expectations" of its value, the CFO said.

"We have been clear that speed is of the essence to make sense," Liddell told investors on a conference call to discuss quarterly results.

He noted that two times as many callers were listening in to the call in light of the deal.

Microsoft will provide an update on its plans for Yahoo next week, Liddell said. Microsoft has set a Saturday deadline for Yahoo to reach a deal or Microsoft has said it will launch a proxy campaign to win support for a merger.

Earlier, Microsoft reported weak Windows sales for its fiscal third quarter ended in March and gave forecast for the fourth quarter ending in June at the low end of Wall Street expectations, sending its shares down nearly 5 percent.