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Yahoo! might trim stake in Alibaba: report

23 december 2011, 11:21
Yahoo! logo
Yahoo! logo
US Internet pioneer Yahoo! is considering trimming its stake in Chinese e-commerce powerhouse Alibaba and letting go of its share of Yahoo! Japan, AFP reports citing the New York Times and Wall Street Journal on Wednesday.

The publications cited unnamed sources as indicating Yahoo! might raise billions of dollars by cutting its ownership in Alibaba to 15 percent from 40 percent and by letting go of its 35-percent share of Yahoo! Japan.

Proceeds could help the faded Internet star's plan to transform from an online search engine to a "premier digital media" company and potentially be doled out to sate shareholders irked by its performance in recent years.

Alibaba's value was estimated in September to be about $13 billion.

The California company's share of Yahoo! Japan, a publicly traded company in which Japanese Internet firm Softbank owns a major stake, was estimated at $6 billion.

Alibaba has expressed interest in getting back its shares from Yahoo!, which has openly indicated it wants to release its interest in Yahoo! Japan.

The complex transaction would be tax free because it would be done in a way not considered a sale.

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