Marissa Mayer

Well, this kind of says something. In her first public remarks about the blockbuster $1.1 billion cash purchase of Tumblr, Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer promises “not to screw it up.”

Meanwhile, Tumblr CEO David Karp notes that the fast-growing blogging platform, which boasts 300 million unique visitors per month and 120,000 signs up every day, will get “better faster” with the acquisition.

The $1.1 billion price tag is hefty, valuing New York-based Tumblr roughly $300 million more than in its last venture capital round.

But some argue that Tumblr is worth it. Check out this analysis from Seattle-based SimplyMeasured which compares Tumblr to YouTube and Instagram:


Here’s the full memo from Mayer:

I’m delighted to announce that we’ve reached an agreement to acquire Tumblr!

We promise not to screw it up. Tumblr is incredibly special and has a great thing going. We will operate Tumblr independently. David Karp will remain CEO. The product roadmap, their team, their wit and irreverence will all remain the same as will their mission to empower creators to make their best work and get it in front of the audience they deserve. Yahoo! will help Tumblr get even better, faster.

Tumblr has built an amazing place to follow the world’s creators. From art to architecture, fashion to food, Tumblr hosts 105 million different blogs. With 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. Tumblr sees 900 posts per second (!) and 24 billion minutes spent onsite each month. On mobile, more than half of Tumblr’s users are using the mobile app, and those users do an average of 7 sessions per day. Tumblr’s tremendous popularity and engagement among creators, curators and audiences of all ages brings a significant new community of users to the Yahoo! network. The combination of Tumblr+Yahoo! could grow Yahoo!’s audience by 50% to more than a billion monthly visitors, and could grow traffic by approximately 20%.

In terms of working together, Tumblr can deploy Yahoo!’s personalization technology and search infrastructure to help its users discover creators, bloggers, and content they’ll love. In turn, Tumblr brings 50 billion blog posts (and 75 million more arriving each day) to Yahoo!’s media network and search experiences. The two companies will also work together to create advertising opportunities that are seamless and enhance user experience.

As I’ve said before, companies are all about people. Getting to know the Tumblr team has been really amazing. I’ve long held the view that in all things art and design, you can feel the spirit and demeanor of those who create them. That’s why it was no surprise to me that David Karp is one of the nicest, most empathetic people I’ve ever met. He’s also one of the most perceptive, capable entrepreneurs I’ve worked with. His respect for Tumblr’s community of creators is awesome, and I’m absolutely delighted to have him and his entire team join Yahoo!.

Both Tumblr and Yahoo! share a vision to make the Internet the ultimate creative canvas by focusing on users, design — and building experiences that delight and inspire the world every day.

— Marissa Mayer, CEO of Yahoo!

* The transaction is subject to customary closing conditions, and is expected to close in the second half of the year. More information about the news can be found in the press release we issued today.

Like what you're reading? Subscribe to GeekWire's free newsletters to catch every headline


  • Guest

    Thank you, Marissa. This is truly inspiring news from Yahoo!’s first effectual female CEO.

  • nohopeforyahoo

    Yahoo will screw this up… Just as Google did when they acquired dozens of companies…

  • Christopher Budd

    What I find most interesting in this is the note. If you read it, it sounds more likely to have actually been written by her (or someone who knows her) than most corporate announcements.

    There’s a definite sense of personal “voice” here as opposed to the institutional “Ministry of Truth” tone that permeates correspondence from CEOs.

    And she gets credit for opening with “We promise not to screw it up.”. That acknowledges past reality and establishes credibility in a way that is lacking and so is refreshing.

  • guest

    I’ll give her credit for addressing the risk of screwing it up head on. You don’t hear that from say Steve Ballmer, despite him ruining dozens of acquisitions

  • Guest1

    Yahoo has not been on its ball game lately and is changing the news source and is posting old news from 2011 as recent. TQM is not in Mayer’s history, nor does she even begin to manage towards better service, unfortunately. Yahoo does need someone with vision and quality, they need a new CEO.

  • usvietnamvet

    If I owned a successful company and Yahoo offered to buy it…If I loved the company and its employees I’d RUN as fast as I could. Mayer is the kiss of death to anything that actually works. Just look at Yahoo groups and mail! ‘Nuff said!

Job Listings on GeekWork