Following the successful initial launch of its Panama advertising system to existing Yahoo ad customers, the company began yesterday to allow use of the system by newcomers in hopes it will begin to draw competitors' business. Long second to Google in the online search ad market, Yahoo has been banking on Panama to even the playing field with Google. According to Yahoo advertising SVP Steve Mitgang, "In the past two months, we have gotten nothing short of extraordinarily positive responses... The systems are obviously at a level of scale, performance and stability we think we can take on all comers." Yahoo shares were up nearly 1% yesterday on news of the expanded release of Panama to close at $26.75.
• Sources: Reuters, MarketWatch. Conference call transcripts: Yahoo! Q3 2006
• Related commentary: Panama Now Open to New U.S. Advertisers, Headlines Aside, Internet Advertising Growth Has Stalled, Major Reorganization At Yahoo Aims To Regain Lost Momentum
• Potentially impacted stocks and ETFs: Yahoo! (YHOO). Competitors: Google (GOOG), Microsoft (MSFT), IAC Interactive (IACI). ETFs: First Tr DJ Internet Index Fd (FDN), Internet Architecture HOLDRS (IAH).
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