In an interview Tuesday with Bloomberg TV, billionaire Mark Cuban said Yahoo’s (YHOO) CEO Jerry Yang should have accepted Microsoft’s (MSFT) $47.5 billion buyout offer. In May of this year, the software giant walked from talks of a proposed acquisition after Yahoo demanded a higher price than the $33/share offered by Microsoft, something that all signs indicate Microsoft has little desire to revisit.
During his interview, Cuban said:
Yahoo’s got a lot of avenues they could take, but all of them depend on being a lot meaner and a lot more aggressive and that’s just not their style. Jerry’s too nice a guy and cares too much. Sometimes when a competitor like Google comes along, you’ve got to get mean and you’ve got to get tough.
Cuban, who already has ties to Yahoo after selling his start-up Broadcast.com Inc. to the company for $5.9 billion in July 1999, thinks Yang may not be tough enough to pull the company out of its slump. Ironically, the Dallas Mavericks owner (currently bidding to buy the Chicago Cubs) has more of a net worth than the founders of the company that bought him out in ‘99. According to Forbes, he currently ranks #161 on the list of richest Americans, while Yahoo founders, David Filo and Jerry Yang are tied at #281.
During the interview Cuban also mentioned the fact that a firmer and more aggressive stance against competitor Google (GOOG) could have preserved jobs at the Web portal. (Yahoo has announced plans to cut 10% of its 15,000 workforce).