Times Colonist

Yahoo lashes out at Icahn

- JONATHAN THAW

Yahoo Inc., fending off an assault from Carl Icahn, said the billionair­e investor misreprese­nted the facts about its rejection of a $47.5 billion bid from Microsoft Corp.

Icahn’s claim that an employeere­tention program is a so-called poison pill “could not be further from the truth,” Yahoo chairman Roy Bostock said yesterday in a letter to Icahn.

He said the program is designed to protect Yahoo’s assets during a time of uncertaint­y.

“Your letter seriously misreprese­nts and manipulate­s the facts,” Bostock said in the eight paragraph letter. “You rely on, as ‘facts,’ a series of unsubstant­iated allegation­s.”

Icahn said yesterday that Yahoo chief executive officer and cofounder Jerry Yang should be replaced for sabotaging Microsoft’s efforts to buy the Internet company.

Combining with Microsoft is the only way Yahoo can become a “true competitor” to Google Inc., he said.

Bostock said Yahoo has met with Microsoft many times in the past weeks, and that the board is open to any deal.

Microsoft has said it isn’t interested in a full acquisitio­n of Sunnyvale, California-based Yahoo, even though the Internet company has reached out “proactivel­y,” Bostock said.

Icahn, 72, didn’t immediatel­y respond to a message left at his office after business hours. Yahoo spokesman Brad Williams said the letter speaks for itself.

Yahoo rose 70 cents, or 2.7 percent, to $26.85 US in Nasdaq Stock Market trading. Redmond, Washington-based Microsoft, the world’s largest software maker, rose 23 cents to $27.54.

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