本周有多篇报道称，私募股权公司银湖合伙基金（Silver Lake Partners ）和Andreessen Horowitz可能有意收购麻烦不断的互联网公司雅虎（Yahoo）。上周炒掉首席执行官之后，雅虎尤其显得“群龙无首”。
雅虎目前的市值有190多亿。其中近一半来自于其持有阿里巴巴集团（Alibaba Group）40%的股权，而银湖和Andreessen Horowitz 据称收购之后会考虑出售这部分股权。我们假设它们有办法应付收购阿里巴巴股权所需的约80亿美元（低于阿里巴巴此前拒绝的95亿美元的回购要约）。
去年，市场信息服务S&P LCD公司称，价值超过10亿美元的杠杆收购交易的平均股权比例为39.28%。虽然信贷市场开始有所趋紧，但我们还是使用这个数字。这意味着银湖和Andreessen Horowitz公司将需要投入47.1亿美元。
到了这个时候，银湖和Andreessen Horowitz公司 就需要拿出点创意了。寻求现有有限合伙人共同投资是一个选择。假设这么做能再筹到5亿美元。而共同投资机构投资者【比如，在收购Skype中伸出援手的加拿大退休基金（Canadian pension fund ）】也再贡献5亿美元。此外，还可以引入其他大型私募股权公司，尽管这有可能抵消有限合伙人共同投资所做出的贡献，因为银湖的很多投资人可能也投资了百事通（Blackstone）和KKR公司，他们不会愿意对雅虎项目重复投资。
现在的解决方案将是与雅虎部分大股东合作收购。可以考虑联合创始人杨致远等个人股东以及美国资本集团（The Capital Group）和美国道富（State Street）等机构股东，让他们持有剩下的11%，这样才能大功告成。
There have been several reports this week that private equity firms Silver Lake Partners and Andreessen Horowitz may offer to buy Yahoo (YHOO), the oft-troubled Internet company that has been particularly rudderless since firing its CEO last week.
The two firms most recently teamed up to buy a majority stake in Skype from eBay (EBAY), and then quickly turned around and sold the entire thing to Microsoft (MSFT) at a heady profit (or at least agreed to do so, as that deal hasn't yet closed). In other words, they are no strangers to either co-investments or Internet brand revivals.
But even if they want to buy Yahoo, can they afford it?
Yahoo currently has a market cap of just over $19 billion. Or that, approximately half is believed to be the value of Yahoo's 40% stake in China's Alibaba Group, which Silver Lake and Andreessen Horowitz would reportedly seek to sell off. So let's assume they can get around $8 billion for the Alibaba position, a discount based on Alibaba's previous rejection of a $9.5 billion buyback offer.
That leaves us with an $11 billion hole. But there would have to be some sort of premium, which we're going to put at a modest 9%. So they really need $12 billion.
Last year, S&P LCD reported that the average equity portion of a $1 billion+ leveraged buyout was 39.28%. Credit markets have begun tightening up a bit, but let's stick with that figure. It means that Silver Lake and Andreessen Horowitz would be responsible for $4.71 billion.
Now let's presume that each firm is willing to commit a whopping 15% of their current fund to the effort. It likely would be the largest single investment each shop has ever made -- and possibly require some limited partner approval, since 10% of often the limit -- but clearly Yahoo would be a make-or-break sort of deal. Combined, that would be around $1.5 billion. Or, put another way, $3.2 billion short.
At this point, Silver Lake and Andreessen Horowitz need to get creative. One option is to tap existing limited partners for co-investments. Let's say that adds another $500 million. And then another $500 million comes in from institutional co-investors, like the Canadian pension fund that helped out on Skype. You also could add another large private equity firm, although that could eat away at the LP co-invest (since many Silver Lake investors also are in Blackstone, KKR, etc... and wouldn't want to quadruple down on Yahoo).
The solution now is to partner on the buyout with select, large holders of Yahoo stock. Maybe individuals like co-founder Jerry Yang and institutions like The Capital Group and State Street. Let them hold the remaining 11%, thus getting us to the magic number.
Yes, all of this would be pretty complicated. And perhaps a better solution is for Silver Lake and Andreessen Horowitz to simply buy a minority stake and help reorganize the company from that position (as suggested by Henry Blodget). And there always is the chance that Microsoft will finally pull the trigger, given that it has more than $50 billion of cash just lying around (a bit less once Skype closes). Or that Microsoft will somehow partner with the PE firms.
But my point is that Silver Lake could afford Yahoo. At least in theory.