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Summary:

Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer explains her plans to get Yahoo back on the path of growth, attract new users and embrace mobile. She also said the company now has about 800 million monthly active users.

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“We have passed 800 million monthly active users,” Yahoo chief executive Marissa Mayer said Wednesday in an onstage conversation with Techcrunch founder Michael Arrington on the closing day of Techcrunch Disrupt 2013. While it is not clear what Yahoo means by monthly active users, the number doesn’t include Tumblr users.

When asked by Arrington asked what the hell happened with the new logo, Mayer said, “Yahoo didn’t change logo for 18 years” and the new logo is meant to reflect the new Yahoo and its direction. “My ultimate goal is to get Yahoo growing again,” said Mayer. She said her focus is mobile and today there are ten times as many people working on mobile products as there were when she started working for the company 14 months ago.

Protestors outside Techcrunch Disrupt appeared to be criticizing Mayer for her board role at Wal-Mart and recent Vogue spread.

Protestors outside Techcrunch Disrupt appeared to be criticizing Mayer for her board role at Wal-Mart and recent Vogue spread.

“We are a personalization company and want to organize the right content and right advertising for the users so people can come to use our service every day,” she said, describing the type of company she thinks Yahoo is. “It will take three or four years for the company to get going.” She said that it will be a chain reaction of right people leading to right products which lead to growth in traffic and ultimately revenue. “They work like a chain reaction. Users don’t come and use them if the products aren’t good.”

Her focus is to get more people on Yahoo Mail, more often. “We want people to use Yahoo Mail every day,” she said. Of course, it is easier said than done. Recent design changes have been met with some resistance from the users.

Despite all the noise and hoopla around Yahoo, I have remained consistently skeptical about the possibility of a turnaround at Yahoo. A clear plan of attack for the so-called turnaround is one of my reasons of concern. Saber-rattling investor Dan Loeb substantially reduced his holding in Yahoo and locked in his profits — another cause of concern from my perspective. The year long stock surge in Yahoo’s stock, Wall Street insiders say, is reflection of the growing valuation of company’s holding in Alibaba, a company that is expected to go public soon.

There were many lighter moments, including Arrington making fun of Mayer’s infamous Vogue spread, which showed her lounging in a chic dress. “The back story of the Vogue is that they wanted to show the unconventional management style of mine,” she said.

  1. This must mean progress for Yahoo. Back in Feb of this year Mayer also brought the remote workers back commuting into work, which must have been an unpopular decision (my speculation.) At that time, I was impressed with that tough call, because I observed a large corporation in my city that was located in two buildings across town and the productivity increase dramatically just moving all the peeps into one local, so I can imagine she saw a sharp increase in productivity right off the bat. Plus it kept the Yahoo loyal who are rowing with her. I’m pulling for their success.

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  2. Should this “A clear plan of attack for the so-called turnaround is one of my reasons of concern.” change to “A lack of a clear plan …” ?

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  3. so tired of hearing about Yahoo …. here’s my question to the internetz .. http://polarb.com/125492

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  4. She also finally had a good answer to the ‘What is Yahoo’ question:

    http://fakevalley.com/marissa-meyer-this-month-yahoo-is-a-personalization-company/

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  5. Hey Marissa! Get rid of the floating tool bar!!!! Do you even read your own users comments???? Your site has exploded with users begging you to remove it and stop stealing our screen space, especially on mobile devices. Do you really think pissing off a large portion of your users is going to help your business?

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  6. They ruined yahoo sports with the recent redesign.

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  7. “I have remained consistently skeptical about the possibility of a turnaround at Yahoo.”

    You sure have. I read this as myopic to recent changes and that it is likely you will be among the last to see news as positive from that company.

    Regarding Dan Loeb, keep in mind the buy out deal was pre-negotiated and long in the making. After unlocking half of alibaba from through yahoo stock buy back , his focus changed to unlocking value in Sony, thus having little reflection on long term investment in yahoo, which traditionally is not what activist investors do.

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  8. Om, i understand the skepticism, but please check out the new yahoo screen. i freaking love it, but maybe that’s just because i love comedy. anyway, clearly someone’s doing some work over there.

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    1. Alex

      Thanks for the reminder — appreciate you taking the time and sharing your recommendation.

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  9. I love how she looks with her hubby Zack here http://wagcenter.com/entrepreneur-wags/zack-bogue-yahoo-ceo-marissa-mayers-husband/, they do make a hot couple

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  10. Does this look like progress?

    http://yahoo.uservoice.com/forums/209451

    So many unhappy users pleads fall on deaf ears. Here’s where her 800m users are coming from. The non working NEO groups. Also on separate forums about the new mail and the horrible new photo sites. More worried about a Modern Look instead of usability…. BOO yahoo!

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