Verizon Media (previously named Oath Inc.) is a subsidiary of Verizon Communications that serves as the umbrella company of its digital platforms. The name "Oath" was chosen to convey its commitment to the digital media business upon its founding in June 2017, although it was ultimately rebranded as Verizon Media in January 2019.
The company was originally created after Verizon, which had acquired AOL on June 23, 2015, purchased Yahoo!'s operating business on June 13, 2017 and merged the two businesses together. Within Verizon Media, AOL and Yahoo! maintain their respective brands. In December 2018, Verizon announced it would write down $4.6 billion (about half) of the value of the combined AOL/Yahoo purchases.
|Oath Inc. (2017–2019)|
|Founded||June 13, 2017|
|K. Guru Gowrappan (CEO)|
Number of employees
Verizon Media is a subsidiary of Verizon Communications. The company maintains dual headquarters at the former AOL and Yahoo! headquarters buildings in Manhattan, New York, and Sunnyvale, California. As of December 2018, the company employed about fourteen thousand people.
Verizon announced a $4.4 billion deal to acquire AOL in May 2015. The deal was an effort by Verizon to expand its technology and media offerings. The deal officially closed a month later.
A year after the completion of the AOL acquisition, Verizon announced a $4.8 billion deal for Yahoo!'s core internet business, looking to invest in the internet company's search, news, finance, sports, video, email and Tumblr products. Yahoo! announced in September and December 2016 two major Internet security breaches affecting more than a billion customers. As a result, Verizon lowered its offer for Yahoo! by $350 million to $4.48 billion.
The AOL deal and subsequent Yahoo purchase were led by Verizon's management team, including Lowell McAdam (CEO), Marni Walden (EVP Product) and Tim Armstrong. Walden had been tasked with merging the two entities and delivering on the promise of moving Verizon from an analog to digital platforms business. Walden exited Verizon in 2017 and as later events revealed, the integration did not deliver the expected value.
Two months before closing the deal for Yahoo!, Verizon announced it would place Yahoo! and AOL under the Oath umbrella. The deal closed on June 13, 2017, and Oath was launched. Upon completion of the deal, Yahoo! CEO Marissa Mayer resigned. Yahoo! operations not acquired in the deal were renamed Altaba, a holding company whose primary assets are its 15.5 percent stake in Alibaba Group and 35.5 percent stake in Yahoo! Japan. After the merger, Oath cut fifteen percent of the Yahoo-AOL workforce.. In 2018, Altaba sold Yahoo! Japan to SoftBank Group.
In May 2018, Verizon and Samsung agreed to terms that would preload four Oath apps onto Samsung Galaxy S9 smartphones. The agreement includes Oath’s Newsroom, Yahoo! Sports, Yahoo! Finance, and go90 mobile video apps (closed in July 2018), with integration of native Oath ads into both the Oath apps and Samsung’s own Galaxy and Game Launcher apps.
On September 12, 2018, it was announced that K. Guru Gowrappan would succeed Tim Armstrong as CEO, effective October 1.
On December 3, 2018, the company declared a new set of rules for the Tumblr community that will take effect December 17, 2018, banning "adult content". This move has raised objections that it harms their LGBTQ community, sexual abuse survivors, sex workers, adult content blogs, and other bloggers. The move came after the Tumblr app was removed from the Apple App Store due to issues with child pornography, leading some to speculate that the ban may have been made to regain access to the App Store.
In December 2018 Verizon announced that it was cutting 10% of Oath's workforce and would write down the value of the business by $4.6B. Verizon management blamed competitive pressures and that the business never achieved the anticipated benefits. The move wiped out all of the goodwill on the balance sheets that accompanied the acquisitions.
Oath was renamed Verizon Media on January 8, 2019.
Some of the digital brands under Verizon Media include:
Verizon has partial ownership of Moviefone's parent company, Helios and Matheson Analytics Inc.
AIM (AOL Instant Messenger) was an instant messaging and presence computer program created by AOL, which used the proprietary OSCAR instant messaging protocol and the TOC protocol to allow registered users to communicate in real time.
AIM was popular from the late 1990s to the late 2000s in North America, and was the leading instant messaging application in that region. AIM's popularity declined steeply in the early 2010s as Internet social networks like Facebook and Twitter gained popularity, and its fall has often been compared with other once-popular Internet services such as Myspace.In June 2015, AOL was acquired by Verizon Communications. In June 2017, Verizon combined AOL and Yahoo into its subsidiary Verizon Media (formally Oath Inc). The company discontinued AIM as a service on December 15, 2017.AOL
AOL (stylized as Aol., formerly a company known as AOL Inc. and originally known as America Online) is an American web portal and online service provider based in New York City. It is a brand marketed by Verizon Media.
The service traces its history to an online service known as PlayNET, which hosted multi-player games for the Commodore 64. PlayNET licensed their software to a new service, Quantum Link (Q-Link), who went online in November 1985. PlayNET shut down shortly thereafter. The initial Q-Link service was similar to the original PlayNET, but over time Q-Link added many new services. When a new IBM PC client was released, the company focussed on the non-gaming services and launched it under the name America Online. The original Q-Link was shut down on November 1, 1995, while AOL grew to become the largest online service, displacing established players like CompuServe and The Source. By 1995, AOL had about 20 million active users.AOL was one of the early pioneers of the Internet in the mid-1990s, and the most recognized brand on the web in the United States. It originally provided a dial-up service to millions of Americans, as well as providing a web portal, e-mail, instant messaging and later a web browser following its purchase of Netscape. In 2001, at the height of its popularity, it purchased the media conglomerate Time Warner in the largest merger in U.S. history. AOL rapidly declined thereafter, partly due to the decline of dial-up and rise of broadband. AOL was eventually spun off from Time Warner in 2009, with Tim Armstrong appointed the new CEO. Under his leadership, the company invested in media brands and advertising technologies.
On June 23, 2015, AOL was acquired by Verizon Communications for $4.4 billion. In the following months, AOL also made a deal with Microsoft.Cambio.com
Cambio is a pop culture website primarily for female millennials - "for girls, #builtbygirls", owned and operated by Verizon Media. Cambio launched in 2010 as a partnership between AOL, the Jonas Group and MGX lab as a next-generation MTV-like video network. In 2012, AOL fully acquired Cambio and in 2014 relaunched it in tandem with a partnership with Girls Who Code when five teenage graduates of the program joined the site as paid interns and helped shape Cambio's editorial mission and site design, as well as doing actual coding. During the six-week assignment, the girls focused on two projects: developing a "Celebspiration" meme generator and creating a platform called "Col[lab]" that encourages young women to write articles on any topic for the site. Cambio sees approximately 7.5 million unique views a month from a predominately 13 to 34-year-old audience.Engadget
Engadget is a multilingual technology blog network with daily coverage of gadgets and consumer electronics. Engadget currently operates a total of ten blogs—four written in English and six international versions with independent editorial staff. Engadget has in the past ranked among the top five in the "Technorati top 100" and was noted in Time for being one of the best blogs of 2010. It has been operated by AOL since October 2005.Flurry (company)
Flurry is a mobile analytics, monetization, and advertising company founded in 2005. The company develops and markets a platform for analyzing consumer interactions with mobile applications, packages for marketers to advertise in-apps, as well as a service for applying monetization structures to mobile apps. Flurry analyzes 150 billion app sessions per month. The company's analytics platform tracks application sessions in iOS, Android, HTML5, and JavaME platforms. Flurry has raised a total of $65 million in funding since its founding and in March 2014 announced that it would partner with Research Now to create a panel database on mobile users. Flurry was acquired by Yahoo! on July 21, 2014 for somewhere between $200 and $300 million.Go90
go90 was an American over-the-top video service and mobile app owned and operated by Verizon Communications. The service was positioned as a mobile-oriented "social entertainment platform" targeted primarily towards millennials, featuring a mixture of new and acquired content from various providers. The service was available exclusively within the United States, although as of March 2018 some of its content became available internationally via Tumblr.
Following an unsuccessful launch (which content partners credited to a lack of firm content strategies), resulting managerial turnover (including a relaunch of the service by the staff of Verizon acquisition and former competitor Vessel), on June 29, 2018, Verizon announced that go90 would be discontinued on July 31, 2018. Including acquisitions that became the basis of the service (such as Intel's OnCue project, and later Vessel), it was estimated that Verizon had spent $1.2 billion on the service.HuffPost
HuffPost (formerly The Huffington Post and sometimes abbreviated HuffPo) is an American news and opinion website and blog, with localized and international editions. The magazine is edited from a liberal political perspective. It was founded in 2005 by Andrew Breitbart, Arianna Huffington, Kenneth Lerer and Jonah Peretti. The site offers news, satire, blogs, and original content and covers politics, business, entertainment, environment, technology, popular media, lifestyle, culture, comedy, healthy living, women's interests, and local news.
The Huffington Post was launched on May 9, 2005, as a commentary outlet, blog, and an alternative to news aggregators such as the Drudge Report. On February 7, 2011, AOL acquired The Huffington Post for US$315 million, making Arianna Huffington editor-in-chief of The Huffington Post Media Group. The site later became part of Verizon Communications, which purchased AOL on May 12, 2015 for US$4.4 billion.In July 2012, The Huffington Post was ranked No. 1 on the 15 Most Popular Political Sites list by eBizMBA Rank, which bases its list on each site's Alexa Global Traffic Rank and U.S. Traffic Rank from both Compete and Quantcast. In 2012, The Huffington Post became the first commercially run United States digital media enterprise to win a Pulitzer Prize.MapQuest
MapQuest (stylized as mapquest) is a free online web mapping service owned by Verizon Media. It was launched in 1996 as the first commercial web mapping service. MapQuest vies for market share with competitors such as Google Maps and Here.RYOT
RYOT /ˈrīət/ (or, riot) is an immersive media company founded in 2012 by Bryn Mooser, David Darg, Molly DeWolf Swenson and Martha Rogers, based in Los Angeles. It specializes in documentary film production, commercial production, virtual reality and augmented reality.
In April 2016, RYOT was acquired by The Huffington Post / AOL in the first VR content company exit in history.Rivals.com
Rivals.com is a network of websites that focus mainly on college football and basketball recruiting in the United States. The network was started in 1998 and currently employs more than 300 personnel.TechCrunch
TechCrunch is an American online publisher focusing on the tech industry. The company specifically reports on the business related to tech, technology news, analysis of emerging trends in tech, and profiling of new tech businesses and products.
TechCrunch was founded in June 2005 by Archimedes Ventures, led by partners Michael Arrington and Keith Teare. In 2010, AOL acquired the company for approximately $25 million.Tumblr
Tumblr (stylized as tumblr and pronounced "tumbler") is a microblogging and social networking website founded by David Karp in 2007 and owned by Verizon Media. The service allows users to post multimedia and other content to a short-form blog. Users can follow other users' blogs. Bloggers can also make their blogs private. For bloggers many of the website's features are accessed from a "dashboard" interface.
As of May 5, 2019, Tumblr hosts over 465 million blogs. As of January 2016, the website had 555 million monthly visitors.Verizon Communications
Verizon Communications Inc. (listen ) ( və-RY-zən) is an American multinational telecommunications conglomerate and a corporate component of the Dow Jones Industrial Average. The company is based at 1095 Avenue of the Americas in Midtown Manhattan, New York City, but is incorporated in Delaware.
In 1984, the United States Department of Justice mandated AT&T Corporation to break up the Bell System and split into seven companies, each a Regional Bell Operating Company (RBOC), and commonly referred to as "Baby Bells". One of the Baby Bells, Bell Atlantic, came into existence in 1984 consisting of the separate operating companies New Jersey Bell, Bell of Pennsylvania, Diamond State Telephone, and C&P Telephone, with a footprint from New Jersey to Virginia. This company would later become Verizon.
As part of a rebranding of the Baby Bells in the mid-1990s, all of Bell Atlantic's operating companies assumed the holding company's name. In 1997, Bell Atlantic expanded into New York and the New England states by merging with fellow Baby Bell NYNEX. Although Bell Atlantic was the surviving company name, the merged company moved its headquarters from Philadelphia to NYNEX's old headquarters in New York City. In 2000, Bell Atlantic acquired GTE, which operated telecommunications companies across most of the rest of the country that was not already in Bell Atlantic's footprint. Bell Atlantic, the surviving entity, changed its name to "Verizon", a portmanteau of veritas (Latin for "truth") and horizon.In 2015, Verizon expanded its business into content ownership by acquiring AOL, and two years later it acquired Yahoo!. AOL and Yahoo were amalgamated into a new division named Oath Inc. (currently known as Verizon Media).
As of 2016, Verizon is one of three remaining companies that had their roots in the former Baby Bells. The other two, like Verizon, exist as a result of mergers among fellow former Baby Bell members. SBC Communications, bought out the Bells' former parent AT&T Corporation, and assumed the AT&T name. CenturyLink was formed initially in 2011 by the acquisition of Qwest (formerly named US West).
Verizon's subsidiary Verizon Wireless is the largest U.S. wireless communications service provider as of September 2014, with 147 million mobile customers. And as of 2017, Verizon is the only publicly-traded telecommunications company to have two stock listings in its home country, both the NYSE (principal) and NASDAQ (secondary). As of 2017, it is also the second largest telecommunications company by revenue after AT&T.Verizon Digital Media Services
Verizon Digital Media Services (VDMS) is an American company known for their content delivery network (CDN).
The company was founded in 2006 as EdgeCast Networks, Inc and was funded by the venture arm of The Walt Disney Company, Steamboat Ventures. The company was headquartered in Santa Monica, California.
Edgecast is notable for being a self-provisioning CDN technology used by the telecommunication and hosting industries. Edgecast was rated the third in the CDN industry by the Yankee Group in August 2009, and turned EBITA positive in Q2 of 2009. EdgeCast Networks was ranked 13th on the Deloitte Fast 500 list for North America 2012.Verizon Hearst Media Partners
Verizon Hearst Media Partners (simply VHMP) is an American entertainment and media holding company jointly owned by Verizon Communications (50%) and Hearst Communications (50%). It was founded in March 2016.Weblogs, Inc.
Weblogs, Inc. was a blog network that published content on a variety of subjects, including tech news, video games, automobiles and pop culture. At one point, the network had as many as 90 blogs, although the vast majority of its traffic could be attributed to a smaller number of breakout titles, as was typical of most large-scale successful blog networks of the mid-2000s. Popular blogs included: Engadget, Autoblog, TUAW, Joystiq, Luxist, Slashfood, Cinematical, TV Squad, Download Squad, Blogging Baby, Gadling, AdJab, and Blogging Stocks.
Today, Engadget and Autoblog are the only remaining brands from the company, now existing as part of Verizon Media division.Yahoo!
Yahoo! () is an American web services provider headquartered in Sunnyvale, California, and owned by Verizon Media. The original Yahoo! company was founded by Jerry Yang and David Filo in January 1994 and was incorporated on March 2, 1995. Yahoo was one of the pioneers of the early Internet era in the 1990s.It provides or provided a Web portal, search engine Yahoo! Search, and related services, including Yahoo! Directory, Yahoo! Mail, Yahoo! News, Yahoo! Finance, Yahoo! Groups, Yahoo! Answers, advertising, online mapping, video sharing, fantasy sports, and its social media website. At its height it was one of the most popular sites in the United States. According to third-party web analytics providers Alexa and SimilarWeb, Yahoo! was the most widely read news and media website – with over 7 billion views per month – ranking as the sixth-most-visited website globally in 2016.Once one of the largest internet companies, Yahoo! slowly declined starting in the late 2000s, and in 2017 Verizon Communications acquired most of Yahoo's Internet business for $4.48 billion, excluding its stakes in Alibaba Group and Yahoo! Japan, which were transferred to Yahoo's successor company Altaba. Despite its decline from prominence, Yahoo! domain websites are still one of the most popular, ranking 8th in the world according to the Alexa rankings as of January 2019.Yahoo! Finance
Yahoo! Finance is a media property that is part of Yahoo!'s network. It provides financial news, data and commentary including stock quotes, press releases, financial reports, and original content. It also offers some online tools for personal finance management. In addition to posting partner content from a wide range of other web sites, it posts original stories by its team of staff journalists.
As of June 2017, Yahoo Finance is part of Oath, the media division of Verizon. It is the largest business news web site in the United States by monthly traffic.Yahoo7
Yahoo7 (originally Yahoo!7 until late 2014) is the Australian subsidiary of global internet company Yahoo! Originally a 50/50 joint venture between Yahoo! and Seven West Media, it has been a 100% subsidiary of Verizon Media since March 2018. Yahoo7 is a web portal, providing email, online news and lifestyle content, as well as weather, travel and retail comparison services.