What a week! While we were busy with all the exciting madness that is Advertising Week in NY, there were some BIG announcements – including an exodus of several key executives at Yahoo! and how the company thwarted Google’s attempt at purchasing Yelp. There was also a ton of chatter about AOL’s purchase of leading tech blog TechCrunch, 5Min Media and software company Thing Labs.
But where things REALLY get juicy is the heated discussion concerning the intersection point of the two companies. Yahoo! and AOL potentially merging to create one big media giant, is being heralded by ‘big investors’ as imminent. All Things D’s Kara Swisher has her infamously humorous take on things including mysterious sources and campy supporting videos. (Which we enjoy.)
Barron’s Eric Savits provides a few additional options for Yahoo! but none of them include the mention of AOL.
And the fine folks over at Fortune featured an article yesterday entitled “Game over, Carol Bartz. Yahoo's stock price is abysmal, employee morale is low, and top-level executives are fleeing. What's left? An Internet property slowly limping to its death and a mouthy CEO with no vision. Her days are numbered.” Ouchie. I bet that made her drop a few of her trademark, lip-smacking ‘f-bombs’ late yesterday.
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Henry Blodget at Business Insider considers it a no-brainer decision for Yahoo’s board, which was rumored to be in an “emergency session” this week. His key argument that this merger must immediately happen (and already should have) is that the companies essentially do the same thing – they are media companies who produce content.
But keep in mind that they also have an enormous overlap in their other product offerings such as email, IM, search, finance, news, ad network and maps that essentially compete with each other. As a combined entity, the new company would actually be in a much better position to compete with Google and Microsoft.
So… is it gonna be goodbye Carol and hello Tim? YAhoOL? YelpCrunch?
UPDATE 1 - This just in from TechCrunch: The Dream Is Collapsing: Another Massive Yahoo Re-Org Coming Next Tuesday
UPDATE 2 - Sarah Lacy chimes in As an ex-Yahoo and a New-AOL’er, My Thoughts on One Portal to Rule Them All