Highlights of Yahoo’s History as a Digital Pioneer

A photo of one of the earliest versions of Yahoo's front page.

Photo credit: dennizn / Shutterstock

Verizon’s recent $4.8 billion acquisition of Yahoo this year shows just how much has changed in the multinational technology company’s 22-year history.

Yahoo went from being one of the world’s largest companies in online search to a digital company that has struggled in recent years to expand beyond display advertising. With Verizon’s help, they hope to rebuild a media and digital advertising company to rival long-time competitor Google.

“The acquisition of Yahoo will put Verizon in a highly competitive position as a top global mobile media company and help accelerate our revenue stream in digital advertising,” said Verizon CEO and chairman Lowell McAdam in a statement.

The timeline below shows some of the company’s acquisitions, mergers, highs and lows, and other noteworthy events. The history of Yahoo represents a story of potential pitfalls of establishing a digital powerhouse that’s continuously forced to reinvent itself, especially when it comes to relying on advertising for funds.

1994: Stanford University graduate students Jerry Yang and David Filo launch the website “Jerry and David’s Guide” as a catalog for managing websites. It was later renamed to Yahoo, an acronym for Yet Another Hierarchically Organized Oracle.

1996: Valued at $848 million, Yahoo goes public with huge stock gains. Led by Thom Weisel, Montgomery Securities, one of the biggest investment banks at that time, helped maintain Yahoo’s IPOs.

2000: Thanks to the dot-com boom, Yahoo’s stock hits an all-time high and closes at a pre-split price of $475. Yahoo’s stock trades at approximately $38 per share.

2008: Yahoo rejects a $44.6 billion acquisition deal from Microsoft in an effort to compete with rival Google.

2012: Yahoo hires Google executive Marissa Mayer as CEO to help rebuild the struggling company. Display advertising revenues slip.

2013: Yahoo acquires social network Tumblr for $1.1 billion. Mayer’s first big acquisition deal is aimed at reaching a Millennial audience.


About DevonJ140
I am currently an Accounting Director living in New York City. I love reading and learning more about business, finance, tech, and current events.

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