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Yahoo’s Mayer says spinning off Alibaba investment is still an option

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Internet and media company Yahoo reported a revenue of $1.09 billion in the first quarter of 2016, this was down 11.02% from $1.26 billion in the same quarter last year. However, the company’s revenues beat analysts estimate which gave confidence for Yahoo’s plan to auction its core business. Thomson Reuters had estimated revenues of $1.08 billion.

Sale of businesses

Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer drilled in the company’s commitment to the “strategic alternatives” announced last quarter. “Our board, our management team and I have made the strategic alternative process a top priority,” she said. “The management team and I have supported the board’s process from the start and we are moving expeditiously,” she added.

The strategic alternatives involve selling Yahoo’s core business and spinning off its investment in Alibaba as a separate company. On spinning off Alibaba investment, Mayer had this to say:

“It is something that our strategic review committee and our board continues to contemplate as one of the strategic alternatives for how we may separate our Alibaba stake and how we might move forward, so we’re doing some work there, but obviously the larger volume of work is being done on the process around the possible sale.”

A report from the Wall Street Journal, citing sources, said that Verizon Communications is leading the pack for potential suitors for buying the company in the first round of bids. Other making a bid for Yahoo include Bain Capital, TPG and Advent International. Bidders who dropped out of the first round include Google’s parent Alphabet, AT&T, Comcast and InterActive Corp.

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Yahoo also added that it is in the process of shutting down more businesses this quarter. Autos, autos, games, real estate and Smart TV are being shut down. Yahoo also expects to close its offices in Burbank, Buenos Aires, Dubai, Madrid, Mexico City and Milan by the third quarter. The company’s head count is now less than 9,200 employees and 700 contractors.

Cash and cash equivalents

At the end of the first quarter, Yahoo had cash, cash equivalents, and marketable securities worth $7.1 billion compared to $6.8 billion as of December 31, 2015, an increase of $0.3 billion.

Chief financial officer Ken Goldman said that the company delivered nearly $600 million of total cash value from IP monetization. “We realize another $31 million in cash value from our Japanese yen hedges in Q1, resulting in a total value of nearly $700 million from hedging our balance sheet investment,” he added.


Yahoo reported a net revenue of $1.09 billion for the quarter ended March 31, 2016, down 11.02 % from $1.26 billion in the same quarter last year. Net losses at the company stood at $99 million compared to the net profit of $21 million in the same period last year.

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– Revenue from the mobile, video, native and social  (MAVENs) business stood at $390 million, an increase of  6.85% from $365 million in the same quarter last year.

– Mobile revenues came in at $260 million, a rise of 11.11% from $234 million in the same quarter last year.

– Revenues from PC decreased 11.34% to $774 million from $872 million in the same period last year.

– Gross search revenue was $820 million for the first quarter of 2016, a decrease of 15 percent compared to the first quarter of 2015.

Download: Earnings release | Transcript 

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