Alex Wilhelm is a San Francisco-based writer. You can find Alex on Twitter, and on Facebook. You can reach Alex via email at [email protected] Alex Wilhelm is a San Francisco-based writer. You can find Alex on Twitter, and on Facebook. You can reach Alex via email at [email protected]
Yahoo needs more mobile engineers, its CEO Marissa Mayer just informed investors on its earnings call. Earlier today, Yahoo beat expectations. It was the first full quarter with Mayer at the helm of the firm.
In a surprisingly candid set of answers, Mayer made a number of interlinked points that are critical to understanding her vision for the company, and what it means in the short-term.
Up first: acquisitions are not something that will be hit hot and heavy up front. As transcribed by Sam Gustin: “‘We don’t have particular acquisitions in mind today, but we need that flexibility…'” She followed that by discussing smaller purchases.
The takeaway is that Yahoo does not appear set to acquire what it thinks that it needs to succeed in the future. And what does it need? Mobile engineers. As tweeted by the excellent Lauren Indvik, “Some point in the future Yahoo will have to be a predominantly mobile company.’ Says $YHOO needs more mobile engineers.”
That’s succinct. In short, Yahoo understands that its products will eventually be used more on mobile than in traditional computing environment – insert your favorite ‘Post PC’ quip here – but that the company lacks the core asset that it needs to execute on that fact: sufficient developers to bring to life its mobile future.
But, big acquisitions are not how it appears set to pick up that power. Smaller acquisitions, if we can spitball for a moment, could be a way by which the company could directly hire the precise teams that it wants to help build future Yahoo products, could be a powerful conduit for the company to accrete the talent it lacks. If it has the stomach to pay the somewhat inflated valuations that startups are currently priced at.
The company does have cash.
For more on Yahoo, and Mayer’s conversation with investors, head here.
Top Image Credit: Eirik Refsdal
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