Yahoo has announced that it will acquire Tumblr in a refreshingly honestly press release that states "Per the agreement and our promise not to screw it up, Tumblr will be independently operated as a separate business."
Yahoo Gets Social, Finally
After all the excitement of a possible social media buying war last week, it looks like Yahoo had already done the deal with the official news out now that it has acquired Tumblr and will run it as a distinct entity with current boss David Karp remaining in charge, with the all-cash deal bringing a handsome return to Tumblr's investors. Karp has just sent this "no change" message to all Tumblr workers and users.
The release continues in the same un-PR-like vein, saying "The product, service and brand will continue to be defined and developed separately with the same Tumblr irreverence, wit, and commitment to empower creators." Read the rest of the release here.
Boasting more than 300 million monthly unique visitors and 120,000 signups every day, Tumblr is one of the fastest-growing media networks in the world, and a valuable catch for Yahoo as it continues to revamp its offering and redefine its relevance. Other numbers include some 900 posts per second, and 24 billion minutes spent on the site each month with over 50% using the mobile app.
That user base with its largely positive customer experience is why the Yahoo made the deal, with the combination expected, by Yahoo itself, to help grow Yahoo!'s audience by 50 percent to more than a billion monthly visitors, and to grow traffic by approximately 20 percent. Surely it can't do that without a little tweaking with the way the Tumblr service runs?
Tumblr should be able to benefit by deploying Yahoo's personalization technology and search infrastructure to help its users discover creators, bloggers and content. In the press release is also the optimistic note that the two companies will work together to create advertising opportunities that are seamless and enhance the user experience.
Many pundits are already sceptical and think this will turn into another Geocities, or several of Yahoo's other buyouts that came to little. But, with Tumblr light on revenue in its current form, Yahoo could be the company that can apply some of its advertising magic (if done in the right way) that extracts some gold from this very deep mine of information.