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Verizon Sells Yahoo-Led Media Assets to Apollo Global for $ 5 Billion – Deadline

Verizon announced Monday that it has reached an agreement to sell its media assets to Apollo Global Management and related entities for $ 5 billion. Verizon will retain a 10% stake in the company, which will be known as Yahoo upon closing of the transaction and will continue to be led by CEO Guru Gowrappan.

The Verizon Media brands are led by Yahoo and AOL.

The telecommunications operator said the exclusion of the company will allow Verizon Media to “aggressively pursue areas of growth and benefit its employees, advertisers, publisher partners and nearly 900 million monthly active users in the world.

The WSJ first reported five days ago that Verizon was exploring a deal. He had already started to get rid of parts of the business. In November of last year, he sold the HuffPost to BuzzFeed. In 2019, he offloaded social media site Tumblr to Automattic, the company that owns WordPress.

Verizon Explores Sale of Media Assets Led By Yahoo, AOL – Report

Verizon Media’s assets also include Techcrunch, Engadget, creative studio Ryot.

The move is the latest in a complicated history of the first two tech companies. Verizon bought the once-powerful Internet pioneer AOL founded by Steve Case for $ 4.4 billion in 2015, and Yahoo for $ 4.5 billion two years later. He merged them into a new company called Oath and appointed Tim Armstrong, then CEO of AOL, to lead it. It left in late 2018. At that point, Verizon announced a sharp $ 4.6 billion depreciation of Oath’s assets, claiming that competitive pressures in the digital advertising industry had nullified the potential of the Yahoo-AOL integration. He dropped Oath’s nickname and renamed the division Verizon Media Group.

Like many players in the digital world, they have struggled to compete for online advertising dollars with Google, Facebook and now Amazon.

Hans Vestberg, chief financial officer of Verizon, acknowledged that “the next iteration” of Verizon Media “requires total investment and the right resources. During the strategic review process, Apollo presented the strongest vision and strategy for the next phase of Verizon Media. I have no doubts that Yahoo will take off in its new home. “

David Sambur, senior partner and co-head of private equity at Apollo, noted that the giant company “has a long history of investing in technology and media companies and we look forward to leveraging that experience to help Yahoo continue to thrive.

Under the terms of the deal, Verizon will receive $ 4.25 billion in cash, preferred interest of $ 750 million and will retain a 10% stake in Verizon Media. The transaction includes the assets of Verizon Media, including its brands and businesses. The transaction is expected to close in the second half of 2021.

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