Verizon (VZ) and Yahoo! (YHOO) . Microsoft (MSFT) and LinkedIn (LNKD) . Ziff Davis and (likely) Gawker. What can investors take away from this year's highest profile technology deals? 'Everyone wants sticky users to maintain valuations,' said Greg Portell, partner at A.T. Kearney. 'They also want to shift to a younger profile because the younger audience base has been elusive, especially for legacy media companies.' When it comes to Verizon's $4.8 billion purchase of Yahoo! last month, Portell said the deal is noteworthy because it signals the death of 'legacy-digital royalty'. The acquisition was the culmination of an auction process that began in February, after CEO Marissa Mayer failed to convince shareholders she could turn the company around. Yahoo! will join Verizon's AOL unit, another notable name from the original dot-com boom. 'Yahoo's situation highlights the difficulty for digital companies when held to traditional financial performance expectations,' said Portell. 'Verizon's interest reinforces the value of a billion-digital unique.' Portell maintained it was a smart move for Verizon because Yahoo!'s traffic is both sticky and heavily mobile. Verizon also knows how to transition digital properties, in his view, so the integration should go smoothly.
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