updated 04:55 pm EDT, Thu June 26, 2008
Icahn Proxy Statement
Activist investor Carl Icahn today filed a proxy statement with the US Securities and Exchange Commission that still insists Yahoo offer itself to Microsoft for a takeover. The filing appears to ignore recent statements by Microsoft that it's now uninterested in a full deal and asks that Yahoo shareholders vote on August 1st for Icahn's takeover-friendly board of directors, who would remove Yahoo head Jerry Yang from his CEO position and directly offer the search engine firm to Microsoft.
The proposed board would also prime the company to be suited to a takeover, including dropping a controversial severance plan that most believe was meant to sour Microsoft on a deal. Icahn nonetheless claims to defend Yahoo's worth and would refuse any partial deal that was worth less than the same $33 Microsoft had offered for a full takeover before talks broke down. Microsoft is claimed to have offered just a fraction of that amount for Yahoo's core search business just before Yahoo forced a conclusion to all talks earlier this month.
Yahoo has so far resisted any of Icahn's offers and has publicly called it a diversion from the company's attempts to improve its standing in online search, labeling Icahn's goal of a Microsoft takeover "ill-defined" and arguing that the investor has no plans beyond the sell-off.