You can almost hear the Yahoos from YHOO as MSFT’s bid dropped away, along with about 20% of its market cap. Big credit, as is to be expected in any matter related to cyberspace, is given to GOOG, which reportedly acted in the background as a support against the Gates of Destruction.
It is a great feeling indeed when an unwanted acquisitional incursion is thwarted. If one is inside a company under this kind of assault, the tension, resentment, anger and determination not to see one’s nation fall is quite intense. And when the Huns retreat from the battlements and head back to the barbarian highlands, it’s high-fives all round, definitely.
And many thanks to those who helped repel the invader. And it’s only natural to let the friendly ally inside the castle — for conversation, celebration and maybe even a little synergistic planning.
About 20 years ago, a corporation of which I am more than superficially aware also sustained an ongoing assault from a hated competitor. For a while, this ancient enterprise looked wobbly, doomed to fall before the barbarian invader from the South.
Then a White Knight came along on a very tiny steed and, with great legerdemain and fiduciary savoir faire, sent the Dark Lord back to from whence he came. There was wassailing all around, and the friend was invited in to purchase a nice piece of the castle itself. Before long, he owned the whole thing, burned most of it to the ground and built a parking lot over its remains. It was left to subsequent owners of the place to put up an almost entirely new structure, which is probably for the best anyhow. Those old castles are hard to heat.
This has nothing to do with whether all the Yahooing and Googling about Microsoft’s retreat is warranted. For now, I’m sure it is. But sometimes it pays to be careful just who you give the keys to the castle, even if they are the most truly awesome dudes in the land when the dragons are flying.