Yahoo’s growth appears to be in some way dependent on the widespread acquisition and subsequent annihilation of some of the Internet’s most promising startups, and no one can figure out why. ReadWrite reports that since Marissa Mayer took over in July 2012, 31 of 38 startup companies acquired by the search giant have had their services shut down, often to the detriment of users who had begun incorporating those services into their daily lives. Vizify, a data visualization company and recent acquisition of Yahoo, immediately notified users that all of its products and services will cease to exist in the near future once the deal was finalized.
The reasoning behind the acquisition spree is clear: bring fresh talent to Yahoo. With the technology that powered these shuttered services in the palm of its hand, Yahoo will have the opportunity to profit from ideas that have already proven successful. But what is Yahoo gaining by shutting down these innovative products in the first place? That’s the question that Selena Larson at ReadWrite cannot answer, and one that is certainly baffling consumers and startups as well.
“The marriage of mobile and contextual search is still in its honeymoon phase—there are plenty of big ideas, but relatively few solid executions,” writes Larson. “If Yahoo does indeed capitalize on bridging its mobile services with contextual search, you can bet it will be a direct result of one of the many companies it has picked up in the last two years—bringing the technology, and recognition that went along with it, in house.”