Verizon, AT&T Poised To Battle It Out For Yahoo

Image courtesy of Morton Fox

Earlier this month, Verizon — fresh off its acquisition of AOL — tried to cement its reputation as a collector of ’90s web relics with a reported $3 billion bid for Yahoo’s core internet business. Now it looks like Big Red has competition from AT&T.

Reuters, citing people close to the matter, reports that a showdown between Verizon and AT&T will likely come to fruition in the third and final round of bidding for Yahoo’s business assets.

The sources say that Verizon is most interested in Yahoo’s ad tools, while AT&T is also looking at those assets as a way to catch up with its rival.

Yahoo’s board is expected to notify Verizon, AT&T, and other suitors that they made it to the third round of bidding on Monday.

While it’s unclear how much the two companies might bid in the third round, previous reports put Verizon’s second round bid at around $3 billion. If the bid pans out, it would be the second large purchase of a ’90s internet giant after Verizon acquired AOL for $4.4 billion last year.

The remaining bids for the internet assets were said to range between $3 billion and $5 billion.

Other companies said to be interested in Yahoo’s business include a consortium led by Quicken Loans and a number of private equity firms.

The auction is expected to conclude next month after a four-month process, Reuters reports.

Yahoo’s road to a sale began back in December when the company’s board began to weigh the option of selling its many online properties, possibly to private equity firms.

The current auction process was initiated in February when Yahoo ditched plans to spin-off its stake in Alibaba. The company began taking bids in April.

Exclusive: Verizon, AT&T set to make final round of bids for Yahoo web assets – sources [Reuters]