Yahoo said Thursday all talks with Microsoft on a takeover or partial acquisition "have concluded," and that the Internet firm would move ahead with its own strategy.
"The conclusion of discussions follows numerous meetings and conversations with Microsoft regarding a number of transaction alternatives," Yahoo said in a statement weeks after the software giant withdrew its bid.
The statement said that during a meeting Sunday that included Yahoo chairman Roy Bostock and other board members, "Microsoft representatives stated unequivocally that Microsoft is not interested in pursuing an acquisition of all of Yahoo, even at the price range it had previously suggested."
Yahoo stated that it rejected an acquisition of its search business alone that Microsoft had proposed, because it "would not be consistent with the company's view of the converging search and display marketplaces, would leave the company without an independent search business that it views as critical to its strategic future."
Microsoft confirmed it is not interested in rebidding for Yahoo but said it remains open to discussing an alliance or partnership that falls short of acquiring he pioneering Internet firm.
"In the weeks since Microsoft withdrew its offer to acquire Yahoo, the two companies have continued to discuss an alternative transaction," Microsoft said in a statement.
"This partnership would ensure healthy competition in the marketplace, providing greater choice and innovation for advertisers, publishers and consumers."
According to the website TechCrunch, which monitors the industry, Yahoo and Google had scheduled a joint announcement later in the day that could mean "a search partnership between the two companies that outsources all or part of Yahoo search marketing, and possibly search itself, to Google."
Yahoo's shares plunged nearly 13 percent to 22.76 dollars on the news.
Microsoft offered to buy Yahoo for 44.6 billion dollars in stock and cash on January 31, but withdrew the offer on May 3, saying Yahoo refused to budge despite the software giant upping its offer to nearly 50 billion dollars.
Later, Microsoft announced that it had reopened negotiations with Yahoo on "an alternative that would involve a transaction with Yahoo but not an acquisition of all of Yahoo."
Yahoo also faces a move by corporate raider Carl Icahn, who is seeking to replace Yahoo's board of directors and revive plans to sell the company to Microsoft.
Icahn said last week that if he wrests control of the company, "I intend to ask our new board to hire a talented and experienced CEO ... to replace (chief executive) Jerry Yang and return Jerry to his role as 'Chief Yahoo.'"
If Microsoft refuses a deal, he added, "I will ask our new board do a deal on search with Google, but only if it contains termination provisions that would in no way impede a subsequent acquisition by Microsoft."
He said he would also ask the new board to offer to sell Yahoo to Microsoft "in a friendly and cooperative transaction."