A US judge refused to let Yahoo delay using Microsoft’s Bing search capabilities in Taiwan and Hong Kong, affirming on Monday an arbitrator’s decision in favour of Microsoft.
Yahoo chief executive Marissa Mayer sought to slow the rollout of its search partnership, arguing that Microsoft chief executive Steve Ballmer’s decision to retire had raised concerns, according to court documents.
But US District Judge Robert Patterson Jnr upheld an arbitrator’s earlier ruling in favour of Microsoft.
Yahoo and Microsoft began a 10-year search partnership in 2010, before Mayer took over as Yahoo’s chief. The two companies hoped their combined efforts could mount a more competitive challenge to Google, the world’s No 1 search engine.
The partnership has not lived up to expectations. Google remains the dominant search engine, with roughly two-thirds of the US search market, while Microsoft and Yahoo’s combined share of the market is essentially unchanged.
Yahoo said it wanted to pause the process until Mayer had a chance to discuss the partnership with Ballmer’s successor, according to a court filing. Microsoft said in August that Ballmer would retire within 12 months.
Mayer has criticised the partnership in the past.
“We need to see monetisation working better because we know that it can, and we’ve seen other competitors in the space illustrate how well it can work,” Mayer said at an investor conference in February.
Microsoft and Yahoo were not immediately available for comment.