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Mayer cites growing Yahoo user base

Douglas MacMillan (via Bloomberg/ SMH) | June 26, 2013
Yahoo chief executive says the company is making headway in efforts to attract shutterbugs and users of mobile devices.

In the hot seat ... Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer.
In the hot seat ... Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer. Photo: Reuters

Yahoo chief executive officer Marissa Mayer, in her first annual meeting with shareholders, said that the biggest US web portal is making headway in efforts to attract shutterbugs and users of mobile devices.

The number of daily active users for the Flickr photo app has jumped 50 per cent since it was redesigned in May, while use of mobile email has climbed 70 per cent since an overhaul in April, she said on Tuesday.

"All of our growth is going to start with our users," Mayer said at the company's annual meeting in Santa Clara, California.

Mayer, the third CEO to preside over the annual meeting in as many years, highlighted user growth, new employee perks and deals such as last month's $US1.1 billion purchase of blogging platform Tumblr as evidence that her turnaround is taking root.

Yahoo shares have climbed more than 50 per cent since her hiring in July - outperforming display-advertising rival Facebook over the same period, she said during the meeting.

Mayer took the reins last year from Ross Levinsohn, who presided over the previous shareholder meeting in his role as interim CEO. Carol Bartz, who held the top spot at Yahoo until her firing in 2011, led the annual meeting that year.

Mayer's push to revamp products such as Yahoo's home page and email had done little to reverse a decline in display-ad sales, an area where Google and Facebook are gaining ground.

Yahoo's share of global revenue from online ads may slip to 3.1 per cent this year from 3.4 per cent in 2012, according to researcher EMarketer. Google's portion is estimated to rise to 33 per cent from 31 per cent, while Facebook may increase its share to 5 per cent from 4.1 per cent.

Adding Tumblr will expand Yahoo's audience by 50 per cent to more than 1 billion monthly visitors, increasing traffic by about 20 per cent, Yahoo said last month.

Mayer has purchased at least 11 companies during her tenure as CEO, from mobile-application makers Stamped and Jybe to Summly, the news-reading app created by teenager Nick D'Aloisio.

Before Tumblr, most of her deals have been small and focused on gaining talent, an approach she advocated during her first conference call with analysts last year.


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