Yahoo Reports Loss for Q4 2008

Revenue drops to $1,806 million

While Google accounted for a strong growth in the past fiscal quarter, and with Microsoft failing to meet expectations, missing estimates by $900 million, but still managing to hold its head above water, Yahoo posted a Q4 loss of $303 million. For the fourth quarter of 2008, the company has seen its revenues drop to just $1,806 million, namely 1% less than the $1,832 million the company reported for the same period of 2007. At the same time, the Sunnyvale Internet giant indicated that revenues for FY 2008 reached $7,209 million, jumping no less than 3% over FY 2007's $6,969 million. The results were announced by Yahoo's new CEO, but in fact reflected the failure of Jerry Yang to keep the company afloat in his last quarter at the helm.

“Despite the challenging economic environment, Yahoo delivered adjusted operating cash flow above the midpoint of guidance for the fourth quarter,” Yahoo Chief Executive Officer Carol Bartz revealed. “The company also made important investments while aggressively managing costs, leaving us better positioned to weather the economic downturn and emerge stronger when advertiser spending improves. We have work to do, but I am excited by Yahoo’s opportunities, and encouraged by the tremendous innovation and momentum I’ve seen since joining the company as CEO.”

In the fourth quarter of the past year, Yahoo's net loss amounted to $303 million ($0.22 per diluted share), as the company, which was already in a delicate balance between profit and loss, followed an “unhealthy” strategy in 2008. For 2007, it had a net income of $206 million ($0.15 per diluted share).

“We are encouraged by our results for 2008,” Yahoo Chief Financial Officer Blake Jorgensen added. “Yahoo’s aggressive cost management and strong balance sheet helped us navigate this unprecedented economic environment. The cost reduction initiatives and investments we made in 2008 have positioned us well for challenging conditions.”

Fact is that Yahoo's new CEO has an extremely tough job ahead, as she jumps aboard in a time when even some of the company's own investors see more value in the sum of Yahoo's parts rather than in the company as a whole. But even if Bartz succeeds in making all Yahoos labor for a common vision, the Internet giant will still be swimming against the current, in the context of the global economic crisis.

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