Twitter kicked tires on Yahoo merger

Add Twitter to the flock of bidders who have circled Yahoo.

Jack Dorsey’s struggling social network met with Yahoo’s management, led by Chief Executive Marissa Mayer, several weeks ago to discuss a possible merger of the companies, sources told The Post.

At the management meeting, Twitter and Yahoo execs spent several hours hashing out Yahoo’s financials, and whether a strategic combo might make sense, according to sources close to the talks.

“Twitter is the destination for instant news, and Yahoo has a lot of eyeballs on its site,” said one source. “The idea isn’t as crazy as you might think.”

Nevertheless, Twitter appeared mainly interested in sucking information out of Yahoo, as it bowed out of the bidding process soon thereafter, sources said.

Indeed, one source noted that Twitter CEO Dorsey didn’t even bother to show up for the Yahoo meeting.

“When your CEO doesn’t show up for a management meeting, you have to wonder how serious it was,” the source said, adding that Twitter’s interest wasn’t driven by “some huge thesis — it was a flyer.”

Yahoo officials declined to comment.

“We don’t comment on rumor and speculation,” a Twitter spokeswoman said.

Second-round bids for Yahoo’s core internet business are due early next week, with telecom giant Verizon still seen as leading the pack.

Other suitors include AT&T, a smattering of private equity firms, and Quicken Loans founder Dan Gilbert, whose bid is being backed by Warren Buffett.

Insiders said some bids could reach $4 billion, with $3 billion in debt financing and an equity check as big as $1 billion.

As for Twitter, Dorsey has enough problems fixing his own company, which has seen user growth flatline, insiders said.

“They’re very scared their shareholders would be outraged” by a Yahoo bid, one source said of Twitter. “Which is not, quite frankly, an unfounded fear.”

via eReputation-Reseauxsociaux |