Yahoo CEO Carol Bartz suggests that a search partnership between Yahoo and Microsoft could save her company somewhere between $500 million and $700 million, even while suggesting that Bing, Microsoft's new search engine, will provide short-term uplift for Microsoft but have little lasting effect on a constantly shifting marketplace.
CEO Carol Bartz suggested June 3 that a
long-rumored search deal between Microsoft and Yahoo would save her company
between $500 million and $700 million, mostly in staff reductions and data
However, Bartz also used her podium at the Bank of America and Merrill Lynch
U.S. Technology Conference in New York
on June 3 to suggest that Yahoo remains a viable competitor in the search
space, without any assistance from Microsoft.
"I personally think we'd be better off if we never heard the word
Microsoft," Bartz told the audience.
In the meantime, Yahoo will continue to devote itself to streamlining its
business processes and reducing its more unwieldy operations into a more
manageable form. Besides slashing
its work force by 5 percent, Yahoo
has been axing unprofitable properties,
the Web page-building service
it originally purchased for 3.6 billion in
The U.S. Technology Conference marks the second time in as many weeks that
Bartz has hinted about the possibility of talks between Yahoo and Microsoft. At
the D: All Things Digital conference May 26 to 28, in Carlsbad, Calif., Bartz
suggested that she would sell Yahoo's search apparatus to Microsoft
for "boatloads of money."
During the same interview, Bartz said Yahoo would consider being sold in its
entirety to Microsoft only if the latter offered "big
boatloads of money." In 2008, Microsoft attempted a
hostile buyout that Yahoo repelled at the cost of dramatically lowered stock
price and then-CEO Jerry Yang, who left the
company by the end of the year.
At the June 3 conference, Bartz also had some characteristically blunt words
Microsoft's new search engine
designed to allow users to conduct
specialized searches for travel and shopping in addition to the traditional
search engine experience.
"They're not going to get scale through Bing," Bartz said, adding
that interest in the search engine would be "temporary."
Microsoft hopes that Bing will allow it to seize some market share from
search engine giant Google, which according to a recent ComScore report held
64.2 percent of the U.S.
core search engine market in April. In that same report, Yahoo came in second
with 20.4 percent of the market, followed by Microsoft with 8.2 percent.
lets users drill down into specific search categories, such as Videos,
Shopping, News, Maps and Travel;
Microsoft has stated that its aim with the
product is to help customers make better decisions.