Whee!, more MSFT-YHOO rumors!

In a post one commenter characterized as “Some guys are talking about pitching Microsoft on a crazy scheme”, Michael Arrington at TechCrunch says he’s hearing of a complicated deal, still early on, that would have a group of investors buy Yahoo!, heavily financed by Microsoft, who would then get the search and search marketing business from Yahoo!.  From Arrington’s post:

Under the terms of the proposed deal, the investment group would make a takeover bid for Yahoo at a relatively low premium of around 20% to its current price of around $13 per share, valuing the company at just over $20 billion.

A complicated financial structure would be put in place to finance the deal, but the bulk of the cash for the transaction would come from Microsoft as debt.

Simultaneous to the transaction Yahoo’s search and search marketing business would be sold to Microsoft under terms similar to what Microsoft proposed in June 2008

While the deal would give Microsoft control of Yahoo!’s search properties without having to own the rest of the company, what Arrington characterizes as “everything the Redmond giant has asked for”, without knowing who the principals are, and what Microsoft thinks of the idea, it’s hard to tell whether this is just a “crazy idea” or something more.  However Microsoft is known to still be interested in the Yahoo! search business, and almost everyone in the industry (except probably Google) wants it to happen, too.  Hopefully a deal gets done sooner than later, so we can report some real news instead of speculation about guys pitching crazy schemes.