SAN FRANCISCO (TheStreet) – Yahoo! (YHOO) scored a five-year partnership with Firefox creator Mozilla, replacing Google  (GOOG) as the default search engine for the Firefox browser, Yahoo! announced Wednesday

Under the terms of the agreement, Firefox users in the U.S. will begin using Yahoo! for search starting in December. These users will access Yahoo! search when using mobile devices or computers. Additionally, Yahoo! and Mozilla plan to delve into other ways the two entities can integrate their products and reach new markets. 

Google's agreement with Mozilla was for three years, according to Reuters.

"At Yahoo!, we believe deeply in search -- it's an area of investment, opportunity and growth for us. This partnership helps to expand our reach in search and also gives us an opportunity to work closely with Mozilla to find ways to innovate more broadly in search, communications and digital content," said Yahoo! CEO Marissa Mayer, in a statement.

Although the company did not disclose financial terms of the agreement, in a Reuters interview with Mayer, Yahoo!'s CEO said the partnership involves a revenue-sharing arrangement with certain "guarantees." 

According to Mozilla, which plans to use other search companies overseas, its Firefox user base searches the Web more than 100 billion times per year worldwide.

"Our new search strategy doubles down on our commitment to make Firefox a browser for everyone, with more choice and opportunity for innovation," said Mozilla CEO Chris Beard, in a statement. "We are excited to partner with Yahoo! to bring a new, re-imagined Yahoo! search experience to Firefox users in the U.S. featuring the best of the Web, and to explore new innovative search and content experiences together."

Although Yahoo! is striking this deal with Mozilla, Microsoft (MSFT) will continue to be the underlying technology powering Yahoo!'s search results per the Internet search giant's 10-year agreement with Microsoft reached in 2010. But, according to Search Engine Watch, Yahoo! wants out of that Microsoft arrangement.

According to comScore's August report, Google held 67.3% of the U.S. search marketplace, Microsoft 19.4% and Yahoo! 10%.

At the time of publication, the author held no positions in any of the stocks mentioned.

This article is commentary by an independent contributor, separate from TheStreet's regular news coverage.


TheStreet Ratings team rates YAHOO INC as a Buy with a ratings score of A-. TheStreet Ratings Team has this to say about their recommendation:

"We rate YAHOO INC (YHOO) a BUY. This is based on the convergence of positive investment measures, which should help this stock outperform the majority of stocks that we rate. The company's strengths can be seen in multiple areas, such as its compelling growth in net income, revenue growth, largely solid financial position with reasonable debt levels by most measures, notable return on equity and reasonable valuation levels. We feel these strengths outweigh the fact that the company shows weak operating cash flow."

You can view the full analysis from the report here: YHOO Ratings Report

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