Verizon To Buy Yahoo! (But Not Its AliBaba Stake)
July 25, 2016 at 4:25 AM (PT)
VERIZON COMMUNICATIONS INC. is buying YAHOO! INC.'s content assets for about $4.83 billion. The deal, which would give VERIZON YAHOO!'s web content and advertising availabilities, does not include YAHOO's $40 billion in holdings in ALIBABA and YAHOO! JAPAN but does include real estate; some of the intellectual property will be sold separately. VERIZON, which bought AOL last year, is expected to leave YAHOO! intact other than combining its ad platform with AOL's.
A release MONDAY morning said that YAHOO! will be integrated with AOL under EVP/President of Product Innovation and New Businesses MARNI WALDEN and that the deal is expected to close in first quarter 2017.
YAHOO! CEO MARISSA MAYER, who has been rumored to be exiting the company upon its sale, said, "YAHOO! is a company that has changed the world, and will continue to do so through this combination with VERIZON and AOL. The sale of our operating business, which effectively separates our Asian asset equity stakes, is an important step in our plan to unlock shareholder value for YAHOO! This transaction also sets up a great opportunity for YAHOO! to build further distribution and accelerate our work in mobile, video, native advertising and social.”
MAYER added, “YAHOO! and AOL popularized the Internet, email, search and real-time media. It’s poetic to be joining forces with AOL and VERIZON as we enter our next chapter focused on achieving scale on mobile. We have a terrific, loyal, experienced and quality team, and I couldn’t be prouder of our achievements to date, including building our new lines of business to $1.6 billion in GAAP revenue in 2015. I’m excited to extend our momentum through this transaction.”
AOL CEO TIM ARMSTRONG said, “Our mission at AOL is to build brands people love, and we will continue to invest in and grow them. YAHOO! has been a long-time investor in premium content and created some of the most beloved consumer brands in key categories like sports, news and finance.” He added, “We have enormous respect for what YAHOO! has accomplished: this transaction is about unleashing YAHOO!’s full potential, building upon our collective synergies, and strengthening and accelerating that growth. Combining VERIZON, AOL and YAHOO! will create a new powerful competitive rival in mobile media, and an open, scaled alternative offering for advertisers and publishers.”
VERIZON Chairman/CEO LOWELL MCADAM said, “Just over a year ago we acquired AOL to enhance our strategy of providing a cross-screen connection for consumers, creators and advertisers. The acquisition of YAHOO! will put VERIZON in a highly competitive position as a top global mobile media company, and help accelerate our revenue stream in digital advertising.”