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November 06, 2006

Yahoo! Inc. Trying to Buy AOL Time Warner Again?

posted by MR WAVETHEORY at 11/06/2006 12:20:00 PM

Fortune speculates that Yahoo! Inc. (Nasdaq YHOO) may be making another end run at AOL. Apparently, Semel has been trying to get Time Warner (NYSE TWX). FORTUNE has learned from multiple sources that Yahoorecently approached Time Warner (parent of FORTUNE's publisher) about buying America Online - essentially trying to jump-start talks that broke down a year ago. A source close to Yahoo disputes that Yahoo approached Time Warner and says that there are no active conversations between the two companies. Regardless of which version is correct, a Yahoo-AOL merger would be a face-saver for Semel: Last year Google outflanked Yahoo and swooped in to become AOL's exclusive Internet search provider, picking up a 5% stake in AOL for $1 billion as part of the deal. Fortune thinks Yahoo! has three options:

Buy AOL.
Sell to Microsoft.
Merge with eBay.
Stay the course.

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