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YHOO-NWS Update: Talks Are Serious And At Highest Levels

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Whether something will actually come out of all this is anybody’s guess but, following on yesterday’s reports, we have been told Yahoo and News Corp (NYSE: NWS). are talking seriously at the highest levels. Put another way, both companies have gone beyond kicking the tires and are looking under the hood — and making sure the VIN numbers match. The discussions came about through a combination of third-party urging and News Corp.’s willingness to reexamine a combination with Yahoo that is in a far-less dismissive mood when it comes to ABM (anybody but Microsoft) options than it was last year when the idea first was broached.

An acquisition is not under consideration but the various scenarios being tossed around so far may not be it, either. News Corp. clearly sees considerable strategic advantage to combining MySpace and other online assets with Yahoo (NSDQ: YHOO). But the last time News Corp. suggested exploring the possibility, Yahoo shareholders didn’t have payout salvation hanging in front of them. Maybe they can bring in a scripting team from Fox now that the writers are back and up come with an ending that gives everyone except Steve Ballmer what they want.