Yahoo (YHOO) Chief Executive Marissa Mayer has gotten the corporate equivalent of a “hall pass” ever since she joined the company in 2012.
Though she has spent billions on acquisitions and has so far failed to ignite growth in the core display advertising business at YHOO, Wall Street has cut her a lot of slack given the potential bonanza it may reap from its investment in the Chinese Internet company Alibaba.
But as I have noted recently, the reality of Alibaba may not match its hype given the potential slowdown in the Chinese economy — Yahoo’s stock has more than doubled over the past year.
Mayer, though, realizes that YHOO stock is on a sugar high that can come crashing down at the slightest hint that the economy in China is not performing up to Wall Street’s lofty expectations. YHOO stock will one day be judged on the performance of its businesses — perhaps sooner than many expect.
Mayer is working diligently to bolster the company’s moribund core advertising business and announced a slew of new advertising products for both display and search advertising at the recent Consumer Electronics Show (CES). The payoff of these offerings for YHOO stock investors may not be apparent for a while.
Mayer made four major announcements at CES that deserve a closer look because they have the potential to move YHOO stock both over the short and longer term. They offer investors hints on the direction she is taking the company and the challenges that lie ahead.
Let’s take a closer look at the announcements in no particular order.