Monday, both Yahoo and Verizon Wireless said that the nation’s leading wireless carrier will be buying Yahoo’s operating business for a reported $4.83 billion. The transaction, pending regulatory and shareholder approvals, should grant the carrier over one billion total monthly search users while giving the two companies more than two dozen media and advertising brands, to be added to the AOL network, plus an email service with 225 million monthly active users.
The deal excludes Yahoo’s cash, shares in Alibaba Group Holdings, shares in Yahoo Japan, other investments and Yahoo’s patent portfolio unrelated to search and advertising.
Yahoo will change its name at closing and transition to an investment company. Back in March, Yahoo let go a thousand employees and closed offices in Dubai, Mexico City, Buenos Aires, Madrid and Milan to prepare for a sale.
Verizon in May 2015 received huge advertising assets in a $4.4 billion takeover of AOL, including major online news properties such as Engadget, the HuffPost and TechCrunch.
It will be interesting seeing how the deal affects Apple.
Yahoo, as you know, is one of the search engine choices offered across Apple’s software platforms, and a data provider for Apple’s Stocks app. Yahoo’s Weather service up until iOS 8 also used to be a data provider for Apple’s stock Weather app. Verizon, let’s not forget, is one of the largest iPhone carriers in the world and an important Apple partner.
The carrier expects the deal to finalize in the first quarter of 2017.