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Yahoo! bids for HotJobs in drive
for non-ad revenues

NEW YORK - Yahoo! has made a takeover bid for recruitment website, as it continues its drive to reduce dependence on advertising and find new sources of revenue.

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It has made an unsolicited bid of £302m in cash and stock for HotJobs, which has a pending merger with TMP Worldwide, owner of rival online recruitment site

The bid of $10.50 a share means Yahoo! is offering a 62% premium on HotJob shares, which closed yesterday at $6.47. Shares in the company, listed on Nasdaq, surged in after-hours trading.

TMP Worldwide had agreed to buy HotJobs in June, but because of its falling share price, TMP's offer is now only worth around £250m. Yahoo! will argue that not only is its offer better value for shareholders, but that it would lead to less regulatory risk.

Yahoo! chief executive Terry Semel plans for 50% of the internet company's revenues to come from non-advertising sources by 2004. Currently, 76% of revenue is generated by advertising.

Recent initiatives to achieve this goal have included introducing fees for services that were previously free on Yahoo!, such as its auction site and car listings. Yahoo! is the world's number one internet destination.

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