Ballmer on not buying Yahoo: 'Sometimes you're lucky'

Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer told the crowd how happy he was that he failed to buy Yahoo in 2008.

Steve Ballmer at the 2011 Web 2.0 Summit James Martin/CNET

Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, never one to hold back his feelings, today told the audience at the Web 2.0 Summit in San Francisco that he was grateful he failed to buy Yahoo for $44 billion back in 2008.

"Sometimes you are lucky," he said in an interview with John Battelle, whose Federated Media puts on the conference. "Ask any CEO who might have bought something before the market crashed (in 2008)... Hallelujah! Putting everything else aside, the market fell apart.... Sometimes you're lucky."

Ballmer did say, however, that Yahoo has value and that he was glad that the Yahoo search deal happened, helping Bing grow its market share in fight with Google. He also told the audience to try Bing and compare it to Google.

About the author

Paul Sloan is editor in chief of CNET News. Before joining CNET, he had been a San Francisco-based correspondent for Fortune magazine, an editor at large for Business 2.0 magazine, and a senior producer for CNN. When his fingers aren't on a keyboard, they're usually on a guitar. Email him here.


Discuss Ballmer on not buying Yahoo: 'Sometimes you're...

Conversation powered by Livefyre

Show Comments Hide Comments