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Yahoo: Three Major Growth Catalysts Going Into FY 2015
- Yahoo's equity interest in Alibaba will increase in value in FY 2015, and by estimates will be worth $56 billion.
- The core search business has better growth prospects, as a result of closing a deal with Firefox.
- Search revenue may increase to $4.32 billion, assuming users keep Yahoo as the default search engine.
- Native ads should drive financial performance, as they tend to perform better on a cost-per-impression basis.
- Yahoo Search may become Safari's default search engine.
- This puts Google in a tough position as it continues to battle anti-trust issues in Europe.
- Microsoft will also benefit as it shares 12% of Yahoo's search revenue.
- Following the Firefox deal, and assuming Yahoo can also get Safari, Yahoo may become the best play on Search going forward.
- Yahoo's assets and cash are a good hedge against downside risk.
- Yahoo's position in Alibaba has given it a lot of breathing room. It should carefully let its strategy unfold in 2015.
- Yahoo may still appreciate further if it continues to land big deals such as the new partnership with Mozilla Firefox.
Can Mayer Successfully Transition Yahoo: An Analysis Of Her Mobile-Centric Strategy And An Algorithmic Forecast
- Yahoo stock has more than tripled due to the company’s investment in Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba.
- Yahoo has acquired new startups to enter new growth markets in online advertising.
- Yahoo is trying to find a tax-free way to return remaining investment in Alibaba to shareholders.
- I Know First algorithm correctly predicted stock price increase in June 30th article and forecasts a future bullish signal for Yahoo stock.
- Firefox will make Yahoo its default search engine.
- Yahoo's search business may undergo a significant period of growth, assuming factors such as pricing and the total number of ads sold increase significantly.
- When conservatively estimating the impact of Firefox, paired with growth in pricing, the search business may grow from $1.8 billion to more than $4 billion in revenue over the next three years.
Yahoo-Mozilla Deal Likely Worth Billions For Yahoo
- Yahoo's search engine will soon be the default search for Firefox, which currently controls 14-19% of the browser market share.
- I estimate that this deal will add $2-2.7 billion of revenue to Yahoo per year, and $2.3-3.1 billion if Yahoo terminates its search engine deal with Microsoft next year.
- Yahoo may be able to capitalize further on this tremendous opportunity by increasing Firefox usage through promotion on its web page.
- YHOO is suitable for Enterprising Investors following the ModernGraham approach.
- According to the ModernGraham valuation model, the company is fairly valued at the present time.
- The market is implying an 11.28% earnings growth over the next 7-10 years, within a margin of safety relative to the rate the company has seen in recent years.
Yahoo's Acquisition Of BrightRoll Highly Accretive Over The Next 5 Years
- Yahoo acquired BrightRoll, a programmatic ad buying platform, which is distinct from a real-time bidding exchange.
- Programmatic ad buying is expected to grow at a fairly high rate as advertisers re-appropriate marketing budgets for targeted ad-buying across publishers.
- The $640 million acquisition offers meaningful upside prospects, as video advertising is expected to take off along with programmatic ad-buying.
Update: Yahoo's Acquisition Of BrightRoll Is A Significant Step In The Right Direction
- Yahoo has been looking to double down on video advertising, and has confirmed it is buying BrightRoll.
- This acquisition supports my original thesis that Yahoo would need to acquire video ad technology to succeed.
- This acquisition means that Yahoo will likely not acquire AOL.
Yahoo Eyes Video Ad Dollars With BrightRoll Acquisition
- This acquisition can catapult Yahoo to a No. 1 position in terms of the number of ads served in the US.
- BrightRoll leads the video ad tech industry, and continues to dominate over some of the top ad tech platforms such as LiveRail and Adapt.tv.
- Video online ad spending is expected to exceed $12.71 billion by 2018.
- Yahoo has moved considerably higher as a result of Alibaba.
- However, core business developments and the prospects of future capital returns make the investment opportunity extremely promising.
- On purely a tangible basis, Yahoo is worth $42.28 billion.
- However, after running an updated sum-of-the-parts analysis, the business should be worth $56 billion (conservatively).
- Various newer divisions of Yahoo are becoming profitable, presenting opportunities for future growth.
- The Display segment continues to struggle.
- Many of the new revenue drivers will demand attention in upcoming quarters.
- Recent events surrounding Yahoo have led it to be a very compelling investment for a variety of reasons.
- Sum of the parts analysis shows YHOO could be undervalued by as much as 40% with plenty of downside protection.
- Starboard reveals an interesting strategy that seems to coincide with Mayer's view from Q3 Earnings.
- Yahoo reported a phenomenal quarter and disclosed qualitative information that helps to quantify Yahoo's recovering search, display and native ad business.
- Earnings growth will come from mobile (native ads), share buybacks and strategic acquisitions.
- I believe that a combination of these three factors along with further upside in its Alibaba stake will drive the valuation premium significantly higher by the end of the year.
- Yahoo reported their quarterly earnings which was embraced by Wall Street.
- The shares have failed to trade above the BABA IPO high of $44 per share.
- I suspect the company's efforts to negate the tax effect will be futile.
Yahoo Earnings: Mobile, Windfall Profits From Alibaba Sale Boost Results
- The sale of Yahoo's 140 million shares in Alibaba boosted its cash position by $7 billion to $12 billion.
- While Yahoo's core search ad revenues (excluding TAC) improved by 6% year-over-year, its display ad revenues declined by 6%.
- The primary reason for growth in search ads revenue was the growth in the price per click.
Yahoo: Ignore The Headlines, The Q3 '14 Results Were Bad
- Yahoo reported Q314 numbers that generally beat estimates based on non-repeating items.
- Operations continue to show negative trends.
- A big jump in earnings from equity interests provided all of the upside that will drop going forward with the reduced investment in Alibaba.
Wed, Nov. 19, 4:11 PM
- Yahoo (YHOO) "has been ferreting away over the past few weeks on several more big acquisitions, largely aimed at helping its flagging display business," Kara Swisher reports. Well-funded ad tech startups MediaMath, RadiumOne, and Turn are reportedly among the targets being considered.
- All three companies operate in the fast-growing market for programmatic (automated) ad buys, which presents challenges for Web publishers such as Yahoo to go with opportunities. RadiumOne was once believed to be hatching IPO plans.
- The ink is barely dry on Yahoo's $640M deal to buy video ad tech platform BrightRoll, whose advertiser-facing solutions include a programmatic buying platform. Four months ago, Yahoo struck a deal to buy Flurry, a provider of mobile analytics tools and an in-app ad network.
- Swisher also reports Yahoo has hired consulting giant McKinsey and "a spate of banks" (including Goldman and JPMorgan) to advise it as it continues exploring options to tax-efficiently monetize its Alibaba/Yahoo Japan stakes.
Mon, Nov. 17, 3:38 AM
- Amid a campaign to merge AOL (NYSE:AOL) and Yahoo (NASDAQ:YHOO), activist investor Starboard Value has revealed that it bought a 2.4% stake in AOL in the third quarter.
- Starboard also took a stake in Yahoo during the same period, urging CEO Marissa Mayer to consider a combination of the two companies.
- Starboard has disclosed the size of its position in Yahoo, listing 7.7M shares, or about a 0.8% stake, putting it just outside the list of top 10 shareholders in the company.
- Previously: Activist Starboard takes stake in Yahoo, calls for AOL merger
Wed, Nov. 12, 3:10 AM
- At least two more top-10 Yahoo (NASDAQ:YHOO) shareholders are pushing for an AOL (NYSE:AOL) merger and have taken their plea directly to AOL CEO Tim Armstrong.
- Armstrong has acknowledged the potential benefits of a merger, but indicated he would only consider a friendly deal, Reuters reports.
- The move follows a campaign by activist investor Starboard Value, which is pushing Yahoo to consider a deal with AOL and unlock its valuable stakes in Asian Web companies.
- Previously: AOL CEO downplays Yahoo talk, predicts ad shakeup
- Previously: Activist Starboard takes stake in Yahoo, calls for AOL merger
Tue, Nov. 11, 4:58 PM
- "BrightRoll is a large, growing and profitable business with net revenues expected to exceed $100 million this year," says Yahoo (NASDAQ:YHOO) as it announces its acquisition of the video ad platform. The deal is expected to close in Q1 2015.
- Yahoo notes BrightRoll's programmatic (automated) ad platform handles ad-buying for 87 AdAge Top 100 U.S. advertisers, as well as all of the top 10 demand-side (advertiser-facing) online ad platforms. Meanwhile, BrightRoll's publisher-facing offerings monetize ad inventory for "tens of thousands" of sites/apps.
- Yahoo, hungry for some time to grow its video ad scale and put an end to its display ad revenue declines, declares acquiring BrightRoll "will dramatically strengthen Yahoo's video advertising platform, making it the largest in the US."
- The acquisition price is lower than the ~$700M previously reported by TechCrunch. Yahoo just reaped $6.3B in post-tax Alibaba IPO proceeds; it has promised to return at least half of the sum to shareholders.
Tue, Oct. 21, 10:28 AM
- BrightRoll, long seen as an IPO candidate, offers video ad buyers a network of 21K+ sites and apps. It both directly sells to advertisers looking to run programmatic (automated) video ad campaigns across the network, and also connects with 3rd-party ad platforms such as Google's DoubleClick, AOL's Adap.tv, and Facebook's LiveRail.
- comScore estimates BrightRoll's network reached 155M U.S. users as of June. The company was reported last year to pulling in over $100M/year in revenue.
- TechCrunch reports hearing Yahoo (YHOO +1.3%) has signed term sheets with BrightRoll, and that a deal (if it closes) is likely to involve a ~$700M-$725M price.
- Yahoo, which just reaped an Alibaba IPO windfall, has been hungry to grow its video ad sales for some time. The company has signed a slew of video content deals and acquired streaming tech developer RayV, and is reportedly thinking of launching a YouTube rival (possibly while leveraging Tumblr)
- Fellow video ad tech provider TubeMogul (TUBE +2.5%) is rallying; its market cap is currently $398M
Fri, Sep. 26, 12:21 PM
- In an open letter, activist investor Starboard Value says it's "a significant shareholder" in Yahoo (YHOO +3.9%), and calls for the company to "explore a strategic combination with AOL (AOL +6.1%)."
- Starboard also wants Yahoo to "[unlock] the substantial value" in its Alibaba and Yahoo Japan stakes in a tax-efficient manner (could be easier said than done), cut losses in its display ad/content ops by $250M-$500M through cost cuts, and put an end to its "aggressive" M&A strategy.
- The firm estimates a $17.67/share "value gap" exists between Yahoo's trading price and its sum-of-the-parts valuation, something it attributes to tax worries and concerns about how Yahoo will spend any Alibaba/Yahoo Japan proceeds (previous).
- It thinks an AOL deal "could offer synergies of up to $1 billion by significantly reducing the cost overlaps in [Yahoo and AOL's] Display advertising businesses as well as synergies in corporate overhead." Starboard also believes an AOL merger could lower Yahoo's Alibaba/Yahoo Japan tax bill.
- Josh Brown argued last week Yahoo is now a prime target for activists. Starboard once waged a failed proxy battle against AOL.
- Yahoo and AOL have both spiked in response to Starboard's letter.
Thu, Sep. 18, 3:12 PM
Wed, Sep. 10, 10:40 PM
- The guessing game has started over which U.S. companies Alibaba (Pending:BABA) might pursue after it becomes flush with IPO cash.
- If Alibaba's borrowing power is factored in, estimates for its total spending capacity range as high as $50B.
- Lion's Gate (NYSE:LGF), Red Hat (NYSE:RHT), and Akamai Technologies (NASDAQ:AKAM) have all been bantered around as potential targets.
- Though a long shot, the case for Yahoo (NASDAQ:YHOO) being in the mix is also intriguing. There's $12B in tax savings generated from Alibaba buying Yahoo - instead of Yahoo selling off its post-IPO stake in the Chinese company and paying the tax bill.
- Alibaba debuts on the NYSE on September 19.
Wed, Jul. 23, 9:40 PM
- After talking with an unnamed "large Yahoo shareholder that is preparing a presentation" featuring a similar thesis, fund manager Eric Jackson thinks there's a good chance Alibaba (Pending:BABA) or SoftBank (OTCPK:SFTBF) will acquire Yahoo (YHOO +3.3%).
- His reasoning: Whereas the value of Yahoo's stakes in Alibaba and Yahoo Japan (OTCPK:YAHOF) are currently discounted for future tax payments, the pre-tax valuations are what matter to Alibaba and SoftBank. The former would be buying back a 22.5% pre-IPO stake in itself, and the latter would be adding to its respective 34.3% and 43% stakes in Alibaba and YJ.
- Jackson estimates Yahoo's assets are worth $56/share to either acquirer - he values the post-IPO Alibaba stake at $33, the YJ stake at $9, and Yahoo's core business at $5, and adds $9 for cash (inc. IPO share sales).
- He speculates Alibaba (were it the buyer) could trade the YJ stake to SoftBank for part of its Alibaba stake (adding to the scope of its buyback), and notes new SoftBank Internet/media chief Nikesh Arora reportedly wanted to buy Yahoo while at Google.
- One caveat: Acquiring Yahoo would give SoftBank a 56.8% stake in Alibaba before factoring IPO dilution. The Chinese government likely wouldn't be pleased with that. Jackson suggests SoftBank could trade part of its Alibaba stake post-acquisition for "something of similar value," but doesn't say what.
- Previous: Alibaba reportedly planning September IPO
Mon, Jul. 21, 5:01 PM
- Yahoo (NASDAQ:YHOO) has confirmed its purchase of mobile analytics platform/ad network owner Flurry, but hasn't disclosed a price. Flurry has also issued a statement.
- Yahoo: "Our combined scale will accelerate revenue growth for thousands of developers and publishers across the mobile ecosystem. Our combined offerings will enable more effective mobile advertising solutions for brands seeking to reach their audiences and gain unique insights across desktop and mobile."
- The company also promises Flurry's offerings (i.e. its data and analytics tools) will help "make Yahoo mobile experiences better through products that are more personalized and more inspiring."
- TechCrunch (citing sources) states the deal's price "could be anywhere between $300 million and $1 billion." One source suggests Flurry was looking for $700M-$800M. Re/code has only reported the price is in the "hundreds of millions."
- 170K developers use Flurry Analytics, but for now, only 8K publishers "monetize" using Flurry's ad solutions, which face competition from Google, Twitter (MoPub), Millennial Media , and many others. The addition of Yahoo's own apps to Flurry's ad network would significantly increase its scale.
- Millennial rallied (MM +2.7%) after reports of the deal broke, as investors hope it, too, will become an M&A target.
- Earlier: Yahoo reportedly buying Flurry
- Update: A source tells the WSJ Yahoo is paying more than $200M.
Mon, Jul. 21, 3:19 PM
- Re/code reports Yahoo (YHOO -0.3%) is acquiring Flurry, a top provider of analytics and ad services for mobile advertisers and publishers. The purchase price is said to be in the "hundreds of millions."
- Flurry claims access to data from 540K apps and 5.5B daily app sessions. Publishers use its analytics services to track user activity and app performance, and to create audience profiles that can improve user acquisition.
- In addition, Flurry has launched a mobile ad network that (with the help of its user data and audience profiles) allows brands/agencies to buy ad inventory provided by developer partners.
- The company was on a $100M net revenue run-rate as of last September. CEO Simon Khalaf suggested an IPO was only a matter of time.
- Acquiring Flurry would provide Yahoo with mountains of mobile app/user data, and bolster its efforts to offset weak PC display ad sales with mobile growth. Marissa Mayer stated last week Yahoo's mobile search and display ad sales both more than doubled in Q2, but didn't give specific numbers.
- Last year, Facebook bought Onavo, another prominent mobile analytics startup.
- Update: Yahoo has confirmed the acquisition, but hasn't given a price.
Mon, Jul. 14, 4:25 PM
- Tim Armstrong would "dearly love" to merge AOL (AOL +2.1%) with Yahoo (YHOO +0.8%), and has (in "sideways ways") brought it up to Marissa Mayer and others, sources tell Kara Swisher.
- However, while many at both companies see value in a deal, given content, video, and ad synergies, Mayer reportedly considers it "small, unexciting, uninspiring and backward-looking."
- Mayer would, however, like to buy the Huffington Post. But Armstrong is said to be uninterested in selling the site by itself.
- The report follows a Sun Valley talk between Mayer and Armstrong that fueled speculation the CEOs were talking about a deal.
- Yahoo's Q2 report arrives tomorrow. The Street is hoping some clarity will be given on Yahoo's plans for its Alibaba IPO windfall.
Fri, Jul. 11, 4:29 PM
- "Yahoo (YHOO) is focused on growing video users and monthly streams ... This deal demonstrates our dedication to accelerating our video strategy and boosting our underlying technology infrastructure in the space," says Yahoo exec P.P.S. Narayan, explaining the RayV purchase.
- No acquisition price is given. Most of RayV's team will join Yahoo's Tel Aviv R&D center.
- The WSJ reported in May Yahoo is looking to buy RayV, which offers a cloud-based platform for encoding, streaming, and monetizing video. The startup asserts its solution is differentiated by congestion-management tech that can adapt to network conditions.
- The purchase follows reports plans to launch a YouTube rival (focused on premium content providers) as part of its efforts to grow video ad inventory, and has bid for leading YouTube network Fullscreen.
Fri, Jul. 11, 11:57 AM
- Yahoo's (YHOO +0.4%) Marissa Mayer and AOL's (AOL -0.1%) Tim Armstrong "talked over drinks into the wee hours Thursday night" at the Sun Valley media conference, the WSJ reports.
- The paper doesn't have details on what the CEOs discussed. The talk is noteworthy in light of widespread speculation Yahoo will bid for AOL using a part of the giant windfall it stands to receive from selling a portion of its 22.6% Alibaba stake at IPO time.
- AOL has a slew of online media and ad network/tech assets that could appeal to Yahoo, and currently trades at just 1.3x 2014E sales. With the notable exception of Tumblr, Yahoo's acquisitions during the Mayer era have generally been smaller purchases meant to reel in technology and/or engineering talent.
- Yesterday: Alibaba's IPO process could start at month's end
Fri, Jun. 27, 1:45 AM
- Yahoo (YHOO) is looking to buy YouTube content provider Fullscreen, and has put in a bid for $250M, Sky News reports. Fullscreen has 380M subscribers and draws over 3B monthly video views on YouTube.
- Fullscreen is backed by Peter Chernin, who is said to have the right to purchase the company at a previously negotiated price, unless another bidder offers over $300M. Fullsceen generated $50-70M in revenue last year.
- YHOO +0.1% AH
Wed, Jun. 11, 2:39 PM
- Acquisition-hungry Alibaba (ABABA) is buying the 1/3 of top Chinese mobile browser vendor UCWeb it doesn't yet own for a mixture of cash and stock. The price hasn't been disclosed, but Alibaba claims the deal is the biggest Chinese Web merger in history, exceeding Baidu's (BIDU +0.4%) $1.9B purchase of app store provider 91 Wireless.
- UCWeb has a 50%+ share of the Chinese mobile browser market, and also has 35% of the Indian market. The company claims 500M total browser users, as well as 50M users for its Android app store, which competes against Baidu and Qihoo's (QIHU +3.8%) popular stores.
- More importantly for Baidu (and also relevant for Qihoo), UCWeb claims a 20%+ share of the Chinese mobile search market on the back of 100M active users. A mobile search JV was launched with Alibaba in April.
- Meanwhile, CNBC reports Alibaba will likely file a new F-1 early next week that includes its Q1 results. Odds are Yahoo (YHOO +0.6%), which has been reporting Alibaba's results a quarter in arrears, will move on the numbers.
- CNBC adds Alibaba is still expected to go public in the first week of August. Bloomberg previously reported Alibaba is eying an Aug. 8 IPO.
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