Yahoo! Inc. (YHOO - Analyst Report) recently announced that it will open a new corporate office in New York’s Times Square and also introduced a new design for its photo-sharing service Flickr.
The company announced a lease agreement with Blackstone Group LP (BX - Analyst Report) for a 176,000 square foot (16,400 square meter) office space in the old New York Times building. The company will occupy floors 9–12 in the office building.
The New York Times building is positioned at 229 West 43rd Street in New York City, famous as the erstwhile home of The New York Times. The Blackstone Group acquired the building in 2011 for $160 million.
Yahoo’s decision to set up an office in Manhattan comes on the heels of its recent agreement to purchase Tumblr Inc. New York-based Tumblr is a micro blogging platform and includes some social networking features. The acquisition of Tumblr is the biggest since Mayer took control and brings a younger population of users, which the company badly needed to ensure continued growth.
Additionally, the company redesigned its Flickr photo sharing site. Users can now get a terabyte of storage space for free, sufficient to store nearly 538,000 photos. Recent enhancements to Flickr include high resolution photo displays and quicker uploads.
The recent acquisition of Tumblr and the redesigning of Flickr come amid growing competition in the mobile and photo-sharing space. Last week Google (GOOG) unveiled a host of new photo-editing tools for its social networking service, Google+, which has gained popularity among photographers. Facebook’s (FB - Analyst Report) mobile photo sharing app Instagram have also gained popularity.
Though Yahoo remains far behind Facebook and Google, Mayer is clearly taking Yahoo into a new era. This is reflected in the upward movement in its share price. Over the last six months, Yahoo shares have appreciated 47.9%.
Yahoo shares currently have a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). Another stock that has been performing well and is worth a look includes Akamai Technologies (AKAM - Analyst Report), which carries a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).