TechCrunch reports the much anticipated Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) – Yahoo (NASDAQ:YHOO) search and online advertising deal may be signed at any time.
The two companies are reportedly in the final stages of ironing out a deal that is likely to see the Redmond, Wash.-based Microsoft paying billions of dollars to take over Yahoo’s search advertising business, while Yahoo will sell display advertising for both firms.
TechCrunch says that according to a source close to the situation, the deal guys that have been negotiating the terms of the transaction for weeks between the two Internet companies are largely out of the process now. The lawyers are negotiating the final details. That doesn’t mean the deal is guaranteed. It suggests however, that the deal is in final stages of negotiation.
“[E]verything we’re hearing says [a deal] it’s highly likely,” said TC founder Michael Arrington. ” The deal will be announced publicly shortly after it’s signed, and could come “today, tomorrow, next week” according to our source.” [TC]
The initial success of the recently launched Bing search engine from the software giant has been said to give the company some leverage over Yahoo in these most recent string of negotiations, which TC notes, have been mostly concentrated “over an up front payment to Yahoo, speculated to be in the $500 million – $1 billion range.”