You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Verizon EVP: Give Us 60 Days to Figure Out How the Yahoo Hack Impacts Acquisition

Verizon’s EVP for Product and New Business Innovation Marni Walden tried stay upbeat on Verizon’s acquisition of Yahoo at the Wall Street Journal’s WSJ.D Live conference in Laguna Beach, Calif. Wednesday, saying that the deal still makes sense for her company. “It absolutely does,” she said.

However, she also acknowledged that disclosures of Yahoo’s massive email hack have brought up new issues for Verizon. “We need to have more information before we can determine” the impact of that hack on the deal, she said. “Yahoo is conducting their investigation. There is a lot of information that Verizon still needs.”

Walden tellingly didn’t answer a question on whether Verizon may back out of the deal as a result, but said that the company wants to finish this evaluation process within the next 60 days.

Two weeks ago, Verizon’s top lawyer went on the record saying that the hack is a material event, which could possibly spike the entire acquisition. Earlier this month, the New York Post reported that Verizon was looking for a $1 billion price cut as a result of the hack.

Walden said that the case for the Yahoo acquisition is very similar to the acquisition of AOL: Verizon simply didn’t have a way to monetize online advertising. “We had the oil in the ground, we didn’t have the rigs to pull it out,” she said. Yahoo would be accelerating the move to monetize online eyeballs with its massive audience of a billion monthly users.

As part of that monetization strategy, Verizon is also increasingly looking to produce its own original content for platforms like Go90. However, Walden said that the focus of these efforts is going to be on short-form content. “Right now, we are not going out to make ‘Game of Thrones’,” she said. “We are not going to make a big content deal.”

That obviously sets Verizon apart from its competitor AT&T, which announced this past weekend that it wants to acquire Time Warner. “They are going after a market that exists today,” said Walden, arguing that Verizon was instead looking to open up new markets for younger consumers.

Popular on Variety

More Digital

  • John Carmack John Carmack, Chief Technical

    Oculus CTO John Carmack to Step Down

    One of the driving forces behind Facebook’s virtual reality efforts is leaving his post: Oculus CTO John Carmack announced Wednesday afternoon that he was transitioning to a “consulting CTO” role this week, and devote most of his time to new challenges outside of the company. “I will still have a voice in the development work, [...]

  • Rachel Brill - BR Studio -

    Bleacher Report Taps Epix's Rachel Brill to Head B/R Studio

    Rachel Brill is departing Epix to join WarnerMedia’s Bleacher Report as senior VP and general manager of B/R Studio, the digital sports division’s recently formed original programming arm. As head of B/R Studio, Brill is tasked with building a slate of mid- and long-form content aimed at Bleacher Report’s millennial and Gen Z-skewing audience. She [...]

  • Variety Tastemaker honoree Ayesha Curry

    Ayesha Curry's Impact Ranges From Family to Food to Philanthropy

    Ayesha Curry — wife, mother, restaurateur, author, executive producer and CoverGirl — literally does it all. Receiving Variety’s Inaugural Tastemaker award at the 2019 Napa Valley Film Festival, the entrepreneur is being recognized for her social impact in combining entertainment, philanthropy and her culinary lifestyle. Curry holds her cookbook — her first step toward a [...]

  • Joe Anthony Russo

    Russo Brothers Creating Marvel vs. DC Docu-Series for Quibi

    Anthony and Joseph Russo, who have been key creative members of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, are now bringing a new show to Quibi documenting the decades-long rivalry between Marvel and DC. Quibi, the mobile TV subscription startup founded by Jeffrey Katzenberg, greenlit “Slugfest,” a documentary series executive produced by the Russo Brothers, whose directing credits [...]

  • Nobu Hotel Palo Alto

    High-Tech Flourishes Help Hotels Thrive in Silicon Valley

    To thrive in Silicon Valley, hotels must be up to par, technology-wise. “The Nobu brand marries the east and west to create something entirely new — it’s approachable luxury,” says Andrew Tilley, VP of hotel openings. Nobu Hotel Palo Alto (180 Hamilton Ave., Palo Alto, 650-666-3311, nobuhotels.com) is the latest retreat from chef Nobu Matsuhisa, [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content