By John Kell and Alan Murray
May 19, 2015

Marissa Mayer says Yahoo never really considered a merger with AOL.


Rumors of a mash-up between the two Internet pioneers were rampant before Verizon announced its plans for a $4.4 billion takeover of AOL last week. But the Yahoo CEO said last night she never saw the “similarities between the two companies.” CEO Tim Armstrong has turned AOL into an advertising service provider, while Yahoo under Mayer has been growing content on mobile devices, and building up video, native advertising and social businesses. (“MaVenNS “ is her somewhat awkward acronym, which she credits to her husband.)


Mayer made her comments to 200 women – plus me – at Fortune’s Most Powerful Women dinner in New York last night. I found myself fortunately seated between Goldman Sachs’ Dina Powell and Yahoo’s Katie Couric, who is paid a reported $6 million a year by Mayer as her “Global Anchor.” My colleague Pattie Sellers asked Mayer whether she was getting a good return on that investment. Mayer replied “by all means.” Couric agreed.


Asked the best advice she’s received as CEO, Mayer recalled Sergey Brin’s words as she was leaving Google to join Yahoo two and a half years ago. Brin said: “Marissa. Don’t forget to be bold.”


You can read more about Yahoo’s plans to expand its video operations here. Meanwhile, there’s also news this morning about Apple’s shifting effort to expand into television, below.



Alan Murray


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