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Yahoo, AOL Joining Forces Under a New Company Called Oath

by Alyssa Newcomb /
The Yahoo logo is shown at the company's headquarters in Sunnyvale, California. REUTERS/Robert Galbraith

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Are you ready for Oath?

Nope, it’s not a Jethro Tull tribute band. It’s the name Verizon picked for its Yahoo-fused digital media company.

Yahoo and AOL, two formerly mighty internet pioneers, will serve as the big anchors of the new company, which will include at least 20 brands, according to a tweet from AOL CEO Tim Armstrong.

Why is Verizon Creating a Super-Powered Media Company?

Once stars of the tech world, AOL and Yahoo struggled in recent years before being swooped up by Verizon. The mobile company has been eager to create new revenue channels, and with Yahoo and AOL's content and advertising prowess, joining the two may allow them to do just that.

Basically, Verizon is hoping to combine two players that fell into the shadow of Google and Facebook to create something huge.

Verizon bought AOL for $4.4 billion in 2015 and the following year bid $4.83 billion for Yahoo, after the internet company said it was reviewing "strategic alternatives" in light of years of management instability.

As Verizon closes in on the deal, it has reportedly shaved at least a quarter of a billion dollars off the price after Yahoo revealed two unprecedented data breaches, impacting half a billion and one billion accounts, respectively.

Armstrong told CNBC on Tuesday that the public will see the strategy at the end of the second quarter. He said the integration of the brands into Oath should take 12 to 18 months, adding: "I feel really good about it."

What's With the Name?

It's not immediately clear what the rationale is behind the rebranding or the name choice, but Twitter users had some fun with the new moniker.

How Will This Change My Yahoo Experience?

The quick and easy answer: It shouldn't.

Yahoo has more than one billion users across its properties, which include Yahoo Mail, Finance and Sports, to name a few.

After the deal closes, it will no longer be the autonomous entity it has been for 22 years, However, loyal Yahoo users should expect it to be business as usual on their end.

All of the brands in the Oath family will continue to exist separately, but pledging allegiance — or rather, taking an oath — to their new corporate overlord.

What's Next for Marissa Mayer?

Yahoo isn't commenting on Mayer's plans. However, tech site Recode reported on Monday, citing unnamed sources, that the CEO would not be a part of Oath.

A source familiar with the ongoing deal told NBC News, "Marissa is focused and working very hard to get this transition done. It’s important for it be done well.”

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