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Who's Going To Buy Yahoo? Why Are Companies Interested In The Ailing Internet Giant?

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Yahoo has been gradually fading into the background in the technological world, and as a result, it's putting itself up for sale – if the price is right, at least.

With that said, the big questions of who's going to buy the company and why still remain.

Potential Buyers

Google

Google is said to be one of the interested companies, but Kara Swisher of Re/code notes that a bid is "highly unlikely."

Verizon

According to Bloomberg, Verizon is on the front line, even going as far as considering to acquire Yahoo Japan as well to make its offer more appealing.

Facebook

Representatives of Yahoo asked Facebook to get in on the action, but Swisher points out that the social media company doesn't exactly need to participate because it already has virtually every front covered, from communications to advertisements.

Twitter

The folks over at Twitter are reportedly taking the matter seriously, getting in touch with outsiders. The head honchos of the social media platform CEO Jack Dorsey, COO Adam Bain and CFO Anthony Noto are also said to be talking about using Yahoo assets to ramp up advertising efforts.

Time

Time is thinking over making a bid. Other private equity firms such as Bain & Company and TPG also intend to make a move, and they are either going to do it independently or behind a strategic acquirer.

SoftBank

A shareholder of Yahoo Japan, SoftBank has set its sights on acquiring the company and stakes in Yahoo Japan and China's Alibaba.

Buyers Out Of The Game

Robert Peck of SunTrust Robinson Humphrey listed down several companies that are expected to benefit from the purchase, including Comcast, AT&T, Verizon, Newscorp, Disney and CBS. As everyone can see, Verizon is among the interested buyers, not to mention that it seems to be pushing a lot of effort to win the deal.

Meanwhile, AT&T and Comcast are backing down, Bloomberg says. On an interesting note, Yahoo denied Microsoft's bid that amounted to $45 billion at some point back in 2008, and the Redmond firm is apparently not going to get involved this time around.

The Reason

The main reason why a couple of companies are flocking over Yahoo is likely because the company holds between $3 and $4 billion worth of patents.

"Yahoo estimated the value of real estate and patents as worth between $1 billion to $3 billion but under 'responsible monetization of IP.' That's not the same thing as aggressive 'commercial monetization,'" an industry source says.

Long story short, the patents are why companies covet Yahoo, but details of which ones are going to be part of the deal haven't been outlined, including the ages of each one.

"Yahoo has a lot of fantastic patents that can be used on the enterprise side. There are Yahoo patents that cover Yahoo business, but there's a lot more that cover businesses they're not in," an intellectual property expert says.

The Deadline

The original deadline was set on April 11, but Yahoo is extending that by one more week to April 18. It looks like Yahoo is giving every firm more time to think about their bids and whether or not they will continue with it.

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