Gather 'round, Children. Let me take you back to a time long ago. It's the dawn of the internet. The economy is booming as we enter a golden age of dot com bubble and a little company with silly name and fun jingle are a tech GIANT. Yahoo! was on top of the world.
The company went public in 1996 and was valued at $896M
Just two years later in 1998 Yahoo! was valued at $40B!!!
That was the last time Yahoo! did anything good because in that same year Yahoo! had an opportunity to buy the new search engine kid on the block. Another company with a silly name. A company called "google". The asking price...$1M. A million bucks. Yahoo could've had Google for the price of a 4th line winger. Yahoo said thanks but no thanks.
The dot-com bubble bursts and Yahoo saw it's valuation go from $125B at it's peak to $10B by 2002. Once again, Yahoo had a chance to buy Google. Yahoo originally turned down an offer for $1B, but after realizing their mistake they went back to Google. Google decided to raise their price to $3B. Yahoo said no. Google is worth about $860B today.
Microsoft tried to buy Yahoo! for $44.6B in 2008, but Yahoo! said no.
In 2012 Yahoo decided to buy Tumblr (remember that thing?) for $1.1B.
“We looked at a transformative acquisition, and we bought Tumblr. At the same time, we were also considering whether it was possible to buy Hulu or, ironically, Netflix. And I think Netflix was $4 billion and Hulu was at $1.3 billion at the time. And either of those, with hindsight being 20/20, would have been a better acquisition.”--Former Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer
Netflix’s market capitalization in May 2013 was $12.7 billion; as of Friday, it was about $143.5 billion. Tough look. Not sure if Tumblr still exists or not.
In 2016, Verizon bought Yahoo for $4.8B.
I think you can make an argument that NOBODY missed out on more money than Yahoo. Just a swings and misses to the tune of almost a TRILLION dollars. Absolutely incredible to see the math of passing on both Google and Netflix inside of a timespan of 11 years.
That Marissa Mayer who was running the company for the majority of that time has a net worth of $600M according to the internet. That is how you fail upwards, folks. I hope to someday fail my way into millions.