December 7, 2015 / 8:05 PM / 2 years ago

Verizon could explore Yahoo's Internet business, CFO says

A man is silhouetted against a video screen with Vodafone and Verizon logos as he poses with a Samsung Galaxy S3 in this photo illustration taken in the central Bosnian town of Zenica, in this file photo from September 3, 2013. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Files

(Reuters) - Verizon Communications Inc’s (VZ.N) chief financial officer Fran Shammo, said the No. 1 U.S. wireless carrier could look at buying Yahoo Inc’s YHOO.O core business, which includes Mail, its news and sports sites and advertising technology, if it is a good fit.

“If we see there is a strategic fit and it makes sense for our shareholders and we can return value, I mean we’ll look at it, but at this point it’s way too premature to talk about that one,” Shammo said.

Verizon’s Shammo was speaking at the UBS annual global media and communications conference in New York on Monday.

Yahoo’s “board and investors have not decided what they’re going to do with that asset,” Shammo said. “I think right now they are trying to figure out exactly what they are going to do.”

Earlier this year, Verizon bought AOL Inc AOL.N in a $4.4 billion deal to push into targeted advertising and mobile video. In October, it launched an ad-supported mobile video streaming service go90 targeted at millennials to tap new revenue.

Yahoo declined to comment.

Yahoo’s board met on Friday in the third and final day of meetings to consider various options for company including selling its struggling Internet business.

Yahoo’s search and display ad businesses, which account for the lion’s share of its total revenue, have been struggling and Chief Executive Marissa Mayer’s efforts to revive the businesses have yielded little results.

Activist investor Starboard Value LP asked Yahoo last month to drop plans to spin off its stake in Alibaba Group Holding Ltd (BABA.N) due to tax concerns, and instead urged the company to sell its core business.

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