An unspecified group of investors is gearing up to make a buyout offer for Yahoo (NSDQ: YHOO) — relying completely on financing from Microsoft, reports TechCrunch, citing unidentified sources. The buyout terms call for $13 per share, which would value Yahoo at around $20 billion, according to the report. By way of perspective, MSFT offered to buy Yahoo last February for $31 per share, and in May, upped its offer to $33, before ultimately being rejected. Since then, Yahoo’s fortunes have taken a turn for the worse, as the financial markets melted this past fall.
As for what would happen if the takeover succeeds, TechCrunch’s sources claim the acquirers would try to persuade former Yahoo staffers to return after installing a new executive team. They also say that this deal would leave Yahoo standing independently, though it would still be tightly connected to Microsoft (NSDQ: MSFT). A Yahoo rep had no comment on the TechCrunch report, and Microsoft reps were unavailable.
Bloomberg, meanwhile, is reporting that the TechCrunch story is incorrect, citing a person familiar with MSFT’s plans.
This latest turn in the never-ending MSFT-YHOO takeover saga follows a report at the end of November that said Microsoft was putting together a deal that would ultimately net it Yahoo