Marissa Mayer makes first acquisition as CEO

Steven Loeb · October 25, 2012 · Short URL:

Yahoo acqu-hires Stamped team and ex-Googlers for break into mobile

Since becoming CEO of Yahoo, Marissa Mayer has put her mark on the company through her hires, filling out a number of positions within the company with people she worked with as an engineer at Google.

Now she has taken her Google connection and used it to complete her first acquisition as well.

Yahoo has purchased Stamped, a startup that allows users to record and share recommendations, it was announced in a letter posted on the Stamped homepage. The New York City-based iPhone app was co-founded by Robby Stein, a former associate product manager at Google, in 2011.

Stein, along with co-founders Bart Stein and Kevin Palms, revealed in the letter that Stamps will be discontinued by the end of the year and that the team would be going to work for Yahoo on a new product that they said could not yet be discussed.

“As for our team’s next step, we couldn’t be more thrilled to join Yahoo!. As a team of mostly former Googlers, we’ve all worked with and are big fans of Marissa. So when an opportunity arose to become a part of the team at Yahoo!, we jumped. As entrepreneurs, it’s never easy to walk away from something you built from the ground up, but the folks we met with at Yahoo! are simply top-notch and we’re thrilled to be joining them!,” they wrote.

“The Stamped team will be creating a brand new product and engineering office for Yahoo in NYC’s Bryant Park. After everything we learned from building Stamped, we’re excited to start work again on something big, mobile, and new -- but we can’t discuss the details just yet. And we’re really stoked to be able to hire lots of talented engineers and designers for this new project.”

By acquiring the Stamped team, Mayer has done more than just make her first purchase as CEO: she has also started the push toward getting Yahoo onto mobile.

During a conference call after Yahoo released its third quarter numbers earlier this week, Mayer explained her plans for Yahoo’s future, which involves hunkering down on Yahoo’s main products: search, mobile, content, and ads. 

“While we’ve made progress, we haven’t capitalized on mobile.  We’ve underinvested and we’ve splintered our brands.  All of this needs to change.  Our top priority is to develop a focused, coherent mobile strategy, accelerating our efforts with product managers and engineers,” she said during the call.

On the Yahoo corporate blog, Adam Cahan, Senior Vice President of Emerging Products and Technology, also made it clear that getting into mobile was a big reason for getting the guys from Stamped on board.

“Most people are always within arm’s reach of their mobile phones. For many of us, it’s the first thing we look at in the morning and the last thing we check at night. Mobile is at the center of how we connect with people, consume information, and pass the time, and we’re focused on making Yahoo! the most inspiring and entertaining way to do just that.”

This is no doubt only the first in many steps to bring Yahoo onto a mobile phone near you.

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