Official: Yahoo snapped up by Verizon in $4.8 billion deal

Verizon has confirmed earlier reports that it will buy ailing Internet pioneer Yahoo in an all-cash deal with a price tag of nearly £3.7 billion ($4.8 billion).

The sale doesn’t include Yahoo’s shares in Alibaba, Verizon said. Yahoo’s Japan shares, its non-core patents, and minority investments are also set to be cut loose from the planned takeover.

Those assets will form part of a new publicly traded company that will be spun out of Yahoo as a separate business. It’s unclear who will head up that firm, however.

Verizon CEO Lowell Adam 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.”

Yahoo will be thrown into the mix with AOL—also a faded Internet star that burned brightly in the ’90s.

The business will be steered by Verizon’s Executive VP Marni Walden, the company said.

Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer—in a carefully worded statement that made no mention of her future at the company once it joins AOL in the Verizon fold—said:

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.

Yahoo and AOL popularised the Internet, e-mail, 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.

Mayer appears to be suggesting that she will be moving on once the takeover completes. Perhaps the new company containing Yahoo’s Asian assets including shares in Alibaba will be Mayer’s next stop. The Yahoo boss told staff that she was “planning to stay,” but arguably she won’t be there for much longer.

Verizon is set to report its second quarter earnings on Tuesday. Its bid to buy Yahoo for £3.68 billion ($4.83 billion) is subject to regulatory and shareholder approval. The deal is expected to be completed in early 2017.

This post originated on Ars Technica UK

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