British daily Financial Times has reported that a possible Microsoft acquisition of Adobe Systems was among the ideas for closer cooperation, raised informally at a meeting of their chiefs.
Attributing the development to two people familiar with the meeting, the publication said that Microsoft's and Adobe Systems' Narayen, "played down the prospect that the informal takeover suggestion would lead to a deal between the two companies".
Quoting one person familiar with the meeting, Financial Times noted the suggestion had not led to any active takeover discussions, while the other person said no deal was "imminent".
The suggestion, arising from a broader discussion about whether the two entities should ally against Apple, highlights Microsoft’s willingness to consider more radical tactics in its efforts to counter Apple's success with iPhone and iPad.
The daily pointed out that Adobe was long seen as a more likely acquisition target for Apple, before a recent rift between the companies. The two firms have fallen out over Apple's decision not to let users of its touchscreen devices view websites using Adobe's Flash technology.
Meanwhile, Microsoft and Adobe, have often found themselves at loggerheads. "Microsoft has created a rival to Flash, called Silverlight, and Adobe's promotion of the PDF document format to support sales of its Acrobat software has made it a direct rival to Microsoft's Office," it added.