Tweet{SCGoogl..." />Verizon Acquires Yahoo, Will Focus on Fantasy Sports
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Monday, 25 July 2016 20:44

Verizon Acquires Yahoo, Will Focus on Fantasy Sports

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Verizon Communications has won the bidding to purchase Yahoo’s operating business for $4.8 billion.

The transaction, which isn’t expected to officially close until the first quarter of 2017, is expected to have a significant effect on the way people consume sports content and fantasy sports. The acquisition of Yahoo by Verizon won’t have any effect on NFL picks against the spread, but it will usher in an era of changes at Yahoo.

 

Last season, Yahoo executed the first livestream NFL game, which was between the Buffalo Bills and Jacksonville Jaguars, a game that was played in London. According to reports, there were 15.2 unique viewers and 33.6 total viewers of the livestream.

 

It was also reported that 33 percent of the viewers of the livestream watched from outside the United States, which was viewed in 185 million countries. Yahoo spent about $20 million for the livestream rights for the game, and CEO Marissa Mayer, who hopes to stay with Yahoo after the acquisition, indicated that there is a potential for more big content licensing after the acquisition is final.

 

Yahoo’s livestream of the Bills vs Jaguars game had a few issues, namely buffering, which was to be expected because it was the first time something like that had been done. Despite the technical issues, it was considered a success because it was a truly mobile experience.

 

One of the positives about the acquisition by Verizon is the fact that Verizon seems like a great fit to expand these types of sports livestream experiences. 

 

For the Win’s Chris Chase said using the Verizon LTE in the car shows just how far we’ve come along from the days of the dial up modem. Chase said he was amazed at the quality of the stream, and watched it using 4G in a populated area and the game came in almost perfectly.

 

Chase said that his biggest complaint was that he had to watch the game on his phone, and he was worried about using up his phone’s data plan.

 

Brian Pruitt, Arbys senior director of media impact, said that it appears that brands appear to have realized the benefits of being in business with the Yahoo because of the livestream, which Verizon may be able to use to get more advertising money for future licensing deals.

 

Pruitt, whose company was one of the sponsors of the livestream, said he was pleased about the success of the livestream because it met his company’s expectations.

 

In the past, Verizon has shown interest in livestreaming events and since it is also partnering with the NFL for the NFL mobile app, which allows Verizon subscribers to livestream local games on Sunday and Thursday Night Football, as well as postseason games, it should be able to use the access to improve its growing customer base.

 

Yahoo also brings in more than $200 million annually from its fantasy sports products. Most of the revenue comes from advertising. The money Yahoo makes from its daily fantasy sports pales in comparison, but the daily fantasy sports business is still relatively new and going through some legal issues right now.

 

When it comes to daily fantasy sports, DraftKings and FanDuel are at the top of the food chain, and there are reports that both companies are currently in negotiations to merge the two daily fantasy sports giants.

 

If FanDuel and DraftKings merge, they will create a juggernaut in daily fantasy sports, but Verizon might be able to use it as a unique opportunity to grow through acquisition. 

 

Verizon is a known brand that is in partnership with the NFL, and Yahoo fantasy sports is also a well know commodity. With the resources at their disposal, Verizon can turn things around in the Yahoo daily fantasy sports department and eventually become a major player in daily fantasy sports.

 

Verizon also has a very large customer base, so if the company decided to focus on the daily fantasy sports department, it could easily push the Yahoo fantasy apps to its client base, increasing the exposure the daily fantasy sports league wasn’t getting before the acquisition.

 

Since customers are accessing their fantasy leagues through their mobile devices more than they did in the past, getting fantasy players to switch to Yahoo fantasy won’t be much of a problem for Verizon. 

 

Once the Yahoo daily fantasy sports department starts gaining some ground, Verizon believes it can knock FanDuel and DraftKings off the top of the ladder.

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