Sun Microsystems left adrift as takeover deal falters

The Associated PressApril 7, 2009 

— Without IBM's $7 billion takeover offer, Sun Microsystems, a Silicon Valley rebel known for independence, is possibly alone again. Unless a new suitor somehow emerges, Sun will have to overcome the wobbly finances that forced it to shop itself around.

Sun's shares tumbled 23 percent Monday to close at $6.56, a day after talks between the rivals fell apart.

IBM and Sun might still end up together. Investors appear to be taking that prospect into account, as Sun's stock hasn't fallen all the way back to the $4 to $5 range it occupied before the acquisition discussions surfaced.

Even so, the public unraveling of the talks is an embarrassment for Sun, which has been dogged by billions in losses since the dot-com bubble burst in 2001. The breakdown could be a boon for IBM, which doesn't need the deal as badly, and now could demand an even cheaper price if Sun's investors hammer the company for rebuffing the offer.

IBM shares fell 66 cents to $101.65 Monday, along with the market's broader decline.

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