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Yahoo acquires Tumblr, grows network

BY CSA STAFF

Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer has announced on her personal Tumblr blog the company’s plans to acquire the social blogging site for $1.1 billion. It is Mayer’s largest deal to date since becoming head of the multinational Internet corporation.

Per the agreement, which Yahoo promises “not to screw up,” Tumblr will be independently operated as a separate business, and founder David Karp will remain its CEO. According to Yahoo, “the product, service and brand will continue to be defined and developed separately with the same Tumblr irreverence, wit and commitment to empower creators.”

With more than 300 million monthly unique visitors and 120,000 signups every day, Tumblr is one of the fastest-growing media networks in the world. Tumblr sees 900 posts per second and 24 billion minutes spent on site each month. On mobile, more than half of Tumblr’s users are using the mobile app and do an average of 7 sessions per day.

Yahoo intends on leveraging the site’s popularity and reach to recruit creators, curators and audiences of all ages to its own network. Yahoo! expects to grow its audience by 50% to more than 1 billion monthly visitors, and to grow traffic by approximately 20%.

The two companies will also work together to create advertising opportunities that are seamless and enhance the user experience. Tumblr made headlines last month when it announced plans to start rolling out ads starting May 2 in an effort to generate revenue — a move that made Karp take back his reported aversion to digital ads, which he expressed back in 2010.

"Tumblr is redefining creative expression online," said Mayer. "On many levels, Tumblr and Yahoo couldn’t be more different, but, at the same time, they couldn’t be more complementary. Yahoo is the Internet’s original media network. Tumblr is the Internet’s fastest-growing media frenzy. Both companies are homes for brands — established and emerging. And, fundamentally, Tumblr and Yahoo are both all about users, design and finding surprise and inspiration amidst the everyday."

"Our team isn’t changing. Our roadmap isn’t changing. And our mission — to empower creators to make their best work and get it in front of the audience they deserve — certainly isn’t changing. But we’re elated to have the support of Yahoo and their team who share our dream to make the Internet the ultimate creative canvas. Tumblr gets better faster with more resources to draw from," said Karp in a statement to the Tumblr community.

The transaction, which is subject to customary closing conditions, is expected to close in the second half of the year.

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REAL ESTATE

Mall shoppers thrive on experience

BY Dan Berthiaume

COLUMBUS, Ohio —Shopping malls continue to be popular with consumers because they offer hands-on shopping experience, according to results of a new survey from Glimcher Retail Monitor. Consumers cite reasons such as ability to try on clothes and accessories (74%), the shopping experience (55%) and store variety (49%) for going to the mall.

In addition, 65% of consumers say a greater variety of stores would get them to shop at the mall more often, while 52% would visit more frequently if experiences such as yoga classes and cooking demonstrations were offered. Thirty percent of consumers shop exclusively at shopping malls, compared to 20% who shop exclusively online.;

"The Glimcher Retail Monitor survey findings show consumers seek an all-around shopping experience,” said Dr. Marianne Bickle, director of the University of South Carolina’s Department of Retailing. “Malls of the 21st century should provide a balance of entertainment and shopping experiences. As our study demonstrates, the components required to bring in foot traffic include planned entertainment, communication, variety and commitment."

“The way consumers enjoy the mall has changed. Today, the mall is a destination, offering more than just retail,” Michael P. Glimcher, chairman of the board and CEO of Glimcher. “While shopping will always be the primary reason people go to the mall, the survey supported our notion that going to the mall is about the experiences — whether that’s having a salad and a glass of wine with your girlfriends or enjoying a movie on a Friday night. People want a mix of retail, restaurants and entertainment.”

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REAL ESTATE

Seattle’s Best opens 10 drive-thru windows in Texas

BY Staff Writer

SEATTLE —Starbucks subsidiary Seattle’s Best Coffee opened 10 new drive-through windows at restaurants throughout the Dallas/Fort Worth area.

Items available for drive-through purchase include 12 combo specials priced $5 or less.

“In addition to our 40 years of experience roasting high-quality arabica coffee, we are bringing a delicious breakfast to Dallas,” said Jennifer Dimaris, vice president, brand management, for Seattle’s Best Coffee. “We invite customers to value their mornings with a great cup of coffee and a menu of breakfast sandwiches, all at a price that you’ll come back for every day.”

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