Headline April 13, 2015/ ''' YAHOO! : IN DESCRIPTION OF ITSELF '''

''' YAHOO! : 


ANOTHER VALLEY C.E.O., discloses that Marissa Mayer regularly shows up for a monthly rotating dinner of Valley C.E.O.'s and that counter to her reputation at Google-

She is thoughtful and gracious and interested in learning from other people. In an interview with TechCrunch, the influential technology blog, its founder, Michael Arrington, asked Mayer what her superpower was- The thing she was really good at. 

''I do think I'm able to sympathize,'' she said. ''Coming into Yahoo last year the company had been through a period of long turmoil and turbulence........If I had superpower, it's probably empathy.''

Proof that Mayer understood other people's point of view came just late that spring, when she persuaded Tumbir, the red-hot microblogging and social networking service, to sell to Yahoo.

In the Valley it is considered remarkable to offer $1.1 billion for a company with almost no revenues, let alone profits, and have a deign to accept your offer. Mayer personally promised David Karp, Tumbir's now 27 year-old founder, that Tumbir would be able to continue to operate independently.

''I do believe the connection they developed was significant,'' says one venture-capitalist involved in the deal. ''She demonstrated that she gets Tumbir, and David really trusts her........If that connection weren't great, it's not clear we would have ended up there.''

Last Year, at Loeb's prodding, Mayer sold part of Yahoo's stake in Alibaba back to the company for $7.1 billion  [Yahoo still owns a 24 percent stake in Alibaba]; to date, she has spent $4 billion of that repurchasing shares of Yahoo-

A move that investors usually like, and a smaller but significant sum buying up at least 20 companies. She has shut down many of the companies she has bought because they are so called acqui-hires.

These are now necessary because talented engineers are so hard to find that to get them you need to buy their companies and lock them into employment agreements. Although paying a lot of money for companies without revenues is reminiscent of old Yahoo, the view in the Valley, is that she has done smart deals.

Under Mayer, Yahoo's new description of itself is ''a global technology company focused on making the world's daily habits inspiring and entertaining.'' She has updated Yahoo's existing products, including the home page, Yahoo News, and Flickr. {although that design was already under way when she got to Yahoo}. 

 Some recent Spring ago, Yahoo launched a weather app so well done that John Ive, Apple's design guru, sent Mayer a congratulatory note; the app has been rated one of Apple's Top 10  products in the app store.

Yahoo's relaunch of its Fantasy Football app has won rave reviews. And she is helping Yahoo transition to a mobile world. Now Mayer says that  800 million consumers visit Yahoo properties each month, up 20% from when she arrived, and that 390 million of those consumers are accessing Yahoo properties on mobile devices. 

(Not everyone is completely convinced by these figures. Analyst Ben Schachter, who covers Yahoo for Macquarie Securities, points out that Yahoo isn't providing enough information for analysts to be sure if the page views are meaningful, high-quality ones.)

Mayer has also done content deals, from purchasing the rights to old Saturday Night Live clips to build an archive of video content to reportedly negotiating a deal to do a video interview show with Katie Couric, to hiring star New York Times technology columnist David Pogue to write for Yahoo.

Mayer has also utterly unafraid to make big, controversial moves. Famously, in early 2013, she send out an all-hands memo, which was obtained by AllThingsD, telling employees that they could no longer work from home.

And there's the stunning rise in Yahoo's stock. Its market value has increased $14 billion since Mayer stepped in, and the stock has even briefly closed above Microsoft's 2008 price offer.

Mayer, who said that she'd do the Yahoo yodel when that happened, apologized to the employees for not having had more time to take voice lessons.

But it doesn't mean that investors now have faith in Yahoo. The increase is due in small part to the increased value of Yahoo Japan, and in large part to the frenzied interest in Alibaba, which has announced plans to sell stock to the public; the rumors are that its value will be anywhere from $70 billion to $200 billion.

''The media cares about Yahoo itself,'' says Schachter. ''But the vast majority of Wall Street Institutional investors are not focused on Yahoo [meaning its core business] at all. This Mayer has acknowledged.

When asked by TechCrunch about the stock's rise, she said, ''I think there have been certainly some very very smart investments that I owe to my predecessors.''

The big question is whether the reasons for Mayer's initial success also make for a stellar future. Some are doubtful.

''She is fearless in her decision-making process not because she is fearless but because it doesn't interest her mind that she could be wrong,'' says a former Yahoo executive. 

''I say that in a positive way. Yahoo's flaw was that it hadn't made decisions in years because it had no convictions. She makes decision after decision and, contrary to her public persona, without data and without knowledge. But it has contributed to her early success.''

The Honour and Serving of the ''operational technology research'' continues. Thank you for reading. And I hope, learning.

With respectful dedication to the Students of the world. See Ya all on !WOW! -the World Students Society Computers-Internet-Wireless:

''' Join Up. Take The Rode '''

'''Good Night and God Bless

SAM Daily Times - the Voice of the Voiceless


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