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The Key to Being Acquired By Yahoo

Many industry commentators have struggled to detect the rhyme or reason behind Yahoo's acquisition strategy. To some it appears more like Yahoo is picking up hot young startups, taking them back to it's bachelor pad, doing the wicked thing and then discarding them like yesterday's paper.

It's not unfair to say that Yahoo has not done brilliantly with some of its purchases. Exciting projects like Flickr, Delicious and GeoCities were all bought at their peak and then stagnated for years under the Yahoo umbrella.

I can at last reveal that I've discovered Yahoo's new method for deciding which startup to buy next: Scrabble scores.

That's right, Yahoo's recent purchases show a clear relationship between a company name's scrabble score and the likelihood that they are bought by Yahoo.

Not convinced? Let's review the evidence!

Bought By Yahoo

  • Qwiki: 21 points
  • Xobni: 14 points
  • Zimbra: 19 points
  • Kelkoo: 14 points
  • Flickr: 15 points
  • Tumblr: 10 points
  • GeoCities: 12 points
  • Delicious: 12 points

Not Bought By Yahoo

  • Meebo: 9 points
  • Taleo: 5 points
  • Siri: 4 points
  • Urchin: 8 points
  • Sendit: 7 points
  • Neolane: 7 points

Yahoo clearly have a cut-off - the company name must be worth 10 points or more. Tumblr only just scraped in (maybe it was sitting on a double word score?). So, when picking your new company name, make sure you add a couple of high value letters if you want to be certain of interest from Yahoo.