Yahoo eyes Tumblr – but will it acquire it?

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According to anonymous sources talking to AllThingsD, Yahoo is rumoured to be negotiating a deal for either a strategic alliance, a small investment in the company, or even a complete buyout of the blogging platform Tumblr – all because they want to become “cool again”.

AllThingsD reports that CEO Marissa Mayer has been interested in the service for some time, and has met with its top executives, including its CEO and founder David Karp. The deals are also reported as being serious.

A deal with Tumblr – any deal – does have some advantages, including bringing a young audience to Yahoo. A partnership deal is likely to be an advertising deal, given that Tumblr has just started pushing advertising to its users after years of resisting. However a buyout could have advantages for both – again for Yahoo, a young audience it can tap into; but for Tumblr, apparently, a better management structure.

As AllThingD notes:

In addition to figuring out its top-line business, Tumblr and its backers have also been spending a long time trying to figure out a managment structure. Even Karp’s strongest backers say that the 26-year-old needs help running the company, and for months they have been looking for a “Sheryl Sandberg”-style COO candidate.