Yahoo will adopt a new corporate identity and slash the size of its board if the proposed $4.8 billion sale of its digital services to Verizon Communications goes through.
The company plans to change its name to Altaba Inc. after it turns over its email, websites, mobile apps and advertising tools to Verizon. The new name is meant to reflect Yahoo’s transformation into a holding company for investments in China’s e-commerce leader, Alibaba Group, and Yahoo Japan that are worth about more than $40 billion combined.
Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer, co-founder David Filo and four other directors currently on the company’s 11-member board will resign after the planned sale to Verizon closes. Verizon is expected to retain Yahoo’s brand under its ownership.
But the Verizon deal has been jeopardized by Yahoo’s recent discovery of two computer hacking attacks that stole personal information from more than 1 billion user accounts during two different intrusions that occurred in 2013 and 2014.
The Wall Street Journal explains the Altaba origin:
“Altaba’s remaining assets include Yahoo’s stake in Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. and Yahoo Japan. The name is a combination of the words ‘alternate’ and ‘Alibaba,’ a person familiar with the matter said.”
As The New York Times points out, the name is very close to “Al-Taba,” a Pakistani scissors manufacturer.
The sale would also bring big changes to Yahoo’s current leadership. According to a regulatory document filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, six members of the company’s current 11-member board would step down — including Marissa Mayer, Yahoo’s chief executive