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June 13, 2016

AT&T, Verizon set to make final bids for Yahoo’s internet business

News: Verizon is planning to challenge AT&T in the third round of bidding, even though its bid is less than other offers.

By CBR Staff Writer

AT&T and Verizon Communications are set to make final round of bids for Yahoo’s Internet business.

Reuters cited sources as saying that Yahoo will hold a board meeting to review second-round offers and reach out to bidders to alert them whether they will go ahead to the next round.

Verizon is planning to challenge AT&T in the third round of bidding, even though its bid of over $3.5bn was topped by other offers at or above $5bn.

Yahoo plans to complete the auction by next month. The company started exploring a sale of its assets after continuous pressure from activist hedge fund Starboard Value LP.

Warren Buffett is also supporting a consortium bidding for Yahoo’s core internet assets.

Buffett, Chairman and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway, is among a group that includes Dan Gilbert, the founder of Quicken Loans.

The news agency said Buffett-backed consortium will make it to the final round and some private equity companies that had made it through to the second round will not be invited to submit third-round bids.

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Yahoo, Verizon and AT&T declined to comment on the report.

Verizon plans to merge Yahoo with AOL, which it acquired for $4.4bn in 2015, to establish a digital advertising group.

AT&T intends to compete with Verizon in advertising technology as it plans to expand in mobile video offerings.

A sale of internet assets would leave Yahoo only hold a 35.5% stake in Yahoo Japan, as well as a 15% stake in Chinese e-commerce firm Alibaba.

Last December, Yahoo abandoned plans to spin off its remaining stake in Alibaba in favour of transferring its core internet business to a new company.

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