Yahoo To Buy Tumblr In An Attempt To Revitalize Itself

Yahoo is expected to announce Monday that it's acquiring the social media site Tumblr, in a deal The Wall Street Journal and other news outlets are reporting to be worth about $1.1 billion. Some analysts are calling the acquisition an effort by Yahoo to be "cool and relevant" again.

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DAVID GREENE, HOST:

NPR's business news starts with a big blogging buyout.

Today, Yahoo announced its purchase of the blogging site Tumblr. The $1.1 billion deal was unanimously approved by Yahoo's board. Analysts say the acquisition is Yahoo's attempt to revitalize itself.

NPR's Kirk Siegler has more.

KIRK SIEGLER, BYLINE: Tumblr is a New York-based social media and blogging site that has been growing rapidly, thanks in part to the exploding use of smartphones and tablets. And then there's Yahoo, which desperately needs relevance, says Kara Swisher, co-editor of All Things D, which first reported the acquisition.

KARA SWISHER: This is a site that's very hip and very cool and has a much younger demographic than Yahoo does. And so it's an attempt to try to marry the two together and hopefully it will work out. Some people think it will, some people think it won't.

SIEGLER: It could be risky at a reported $1.1 billion. But Swisher says Yahoo doesn't have a lot of other options.

SWISHER: They tried to buy Facebook and were unsuccessful and so, I think, now they just can't afford to make the mistakes on these up and coming sites that might help them continue to grow.

SIEGLER: The reported deal is the biggest move yet in Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer's short tenure. Mayer, who used to be an executive at Google, has been tasked with reinventing Yahoo; a charge that's already had some early successes, if the company's climbing stock prices are any indication.

Kirk Siegler, NPR News.

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