Yahoo boss formulating 'a chain reaction of growth'

By Peter Gothard
29 Jan 2013 View Comments
yahoo's Marissa Mayer

Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer has declared a projected upturn in the company's fortunes, in its first financial outlook since she took over as CEO in July 2012.

"While the road to growth is certain, it will not be immediate," said Mayer, during an investor conference in which she predicted revenues for the coming year of between $4.5bn (£2.8bn) and $4.6bn (£2.9bn), projecting an annual growth rate of between 0.7 and three per cent for the struggling web company.

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Describing a planned "chain reaction of growth", Mayer explained that the company's attempts to improve its mobile offerings, which began last year with a revamp of photo service Flickr, is an ongoing process, but that Yahoo now has 200 million monthly users accessing its services from mobile devices.

While Mayer admitted that mobile is "still a very nascent source of revenue for us", she added that "revenue always followed users, and mobile will be no different."

However, the CEO also expressed the intention to move towards "getting 50 per cent of [Yahoo's] engineering staff on mobile - I think this is something that'll happen".

Mayer also outlined a general three-step plan to overcome what she sees as Yahoo's main challenges going forward: "Increasing usage, growing our international presence and appealing to a broader demographic of users - roughly in that order of priority."

While Yahoo enjoyed a four per cent year-on-year increase in its revenue in Q4 2012, it also saw a 10 per cent decline in display advertising on Yahoo's main sites.

Yahoo expects Q1 2013 revenue of between $1.07bn (£681m) and $1.1bn (£700m). Reaction to the conference call was positive, with Yahoo shares going up 59 cents - reaching $20.90 (£13.30) - during after-hours trading yesterday.

Yahoo's stock value has risen about 30 per cent since Mayer took over as CEO.

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