March 15, 2008 in Business

Microsoft meets with Yahoo

The Spokesman-Review

Microsoft Corp. met with Yahoo Inc. to discuss the software maker’s unsolicited takeover bid earlier this week, a breakthrough that could be the first step toward a friendly deal between the two rivals.

The meeting occurred Monday near Yahoo’s Sunnyvale, Calif., headquarters, according to a person familiar with the situation. The person spoke Friday on the condition of not being identified because the preliminary talks haven’t been formally disclosed.

No investment bankers attended Monday’s meeting, nor was there any discussion about whether Microsoft is willing to raise its offer, initially valued at $44.6 billion, or $31 per share. Yahoo’s board already has rejected that bid.

Microsoft has held firm with its bid and warned it’s prepared to pursue a hostile takeover if Yahoo continues to resist.

Boeing Co. chief executive Jim McNerney received compensation valued at $12.9 million last year, a nearly 7 percent decrease from what he earned a year ago when he received extra money for relocation and security, according to a regulatory filing Friday.

McNerney, who is also Boeing’s president and chairman, earned a salary of $1.8 million and a performance-based bonus of $4.3 million in 2007 – a year that saw the Chicago-based aerospace company grow its profit 84 percent.

The bulk of the 58-year-old’s pay package came in stock and options valued at $5.9 million at the time they were awarded, according to the company filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Last year, McNerney received stock and options valued at $6 million.

Both McNerney’s salary and bonus were higher than in 2006, but the total value of his compensation package was marked by a 53 percent decrease in other compensation he received.

Office Depot‘s chief executive received more than $17.8 million in total compensation in 2007, an 85 percent increase over 2006 despite a difficult year for the nation’s second biggest office-supply chain, an Associated Press analysis of company filings showed.

Office Depot Inc. Chairman and Chief Executive Steve Odland earned $1 million in base salary and $518,309 in other compensation, which includes $311,344 in personal aircraft usage, according to the company’s proxy statement filed Thursday with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Most of Odland’s compensation came from restricted stock shares and options at a per-share price of $33.60 in February 2007 – a total of more than $16.3 million and an increase of 171 percent from nearly $6 million in 2006, the filing showed.

In all, Odland received more than $9.6 million in compensation in 2006, including $395,709 in other compensation that contains $277,093 in aircraft usage.

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