Biz Break: Microsoft may back bids for Yahoo

Top Of The Order: 

Meet The Possible New Boss: As if Yahoo didn’t have enough going on right now, what with layoffs taking place and activist investor Starboard Value LP set to launch a proxy fight to wrest control of its board of directors, there’s a chance Microsoft might be about to enter the drama surrounding the troubled Internet company.

Microsoft has reportedly said it is willing to help potential Yahoo buyers by providing financial support to such acquisition efforts. Microsoft is said to not be interested in buying Yahoo outright itself, but it would assist a possible buyer in order to ensure that whatever Yahoo emerges from the deal will remain friendly to the software giant.

Yahoo is said to be asking for about $10 billion for its core Internet business, but potential acquirers are thinking more in the range of $6 billion to $8 billion.

All this speculation is also coming almost exactly eight years after Microsoft, then led by Steve Ballmer, made an unsolicited acquisition offer for Yahoo that eventually reached $31 a share, or about $45 billion. Microsoft eventually dropped its takeover efforts in mid-2008.

Middle Innings:

Hitting The Brakes: Netflix admitted that it has been responsible for so-called “throttling” of its video streams on the wireless networks of AT&T and Verizon. What is “throttling”? It’s a fancy way of saying Netflix has lowered the quality of its video streaming over those networks. Netflix said it has been doing this for five years in an effort to help its subscribers not exceed their mobile data caps imposed by the wireless networks.

A Picture’s Worth $100 Million:  At least it is when that “picture” is a personalized emoji, and when Snapchat is writing the check. Snapchat has spent a reported $100 million to acquire Toronto-based Bitstrips, which makes an app that lets a person create a personalized emoji by picking from a selection of face shapes, skin colors, and other features. This results in what is called a “bitmoji,” which may end up be a candidate for Word Of The Year, if Snapchat’s acquisition takes off.

What Is An Echo Of An Echo?: Google has been so impressed by Amazon’s Echo that is said to be working on a similar, voice-activated home device that can provide a person with information and access to various online services.

Bottom Of The Lineup:

Silicon Valley stocks were asleep Friday, because the stock market was closed in observance of Good Friday. The stock market circus will be back in full force on Monday.

Quote Of The Day: “I always turn to the sports pages first, which records people’s accomplishments. The front page has nothing but man’s failures.” — Earl Warren, Chief Justice of the United States, 1953-1969.

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Photo: Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella speaks at an event demonstrating the new features of Windows 10 at the company’s headquarters Wednesday, Jan. 21, 2015, in Redmond, Wash. Microsoft has reportedly expressed interest in helping possible acquirers of Yahoo finance such a deal.  (AP/Elaine Thompson).


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  • U.S. Department of Justice,
    Q1: when is it okie dokie for a no. 1 (pick any industry) to buy
    a no. 2 or no. 3 or no. 4 (in the same industry)?
    Q2: when is it okie dokie for a no. 2 (pick any industry) to buy
    a no. 3 or a no. 4 (in the same industry)?
    Q3: who decides?
    A3: certainly not (unqualified) shareholders or voters;
    Despite negative media attention following his indictment,
    Grimm won re-election to the House in 2014 to represent
    the 11th Congressional District of New York.

    Supporters said they just didn’t care about his indictment.
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    “I don’t buy any of that,” said Michael Polito, 38,
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    “All of a sudden in an election year all this comes up.
    How come this stuff didn’t come up the last time?”
    “To be perfectly honest he’s done a lot of good here,”
    said Jackie Rehak 62.