Marissa Mayer Speaks

Marissa mayerTechCrunchMarissa Mayer.

Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer spoke at the TechCrunch Disrupt conference today in an interview with the site’s founder Michael Arrington.

The interview touched on a lot, from the ouster of Yahoo’s COO Henrique De Castro after a little over a year to Alibaba’s impending IPO. (Yahoo owns a large chunk of Alibaba.)

Mayer couldn’t comment specifically on Alibaba because the company is in its pre-IPO quiet period. However, Yahoo is about to cash in about $US10 billion on the IPO, so Arrington asked what kinds of things Yahoo would do (in theory) with that kind of cash.

Mayer pointed to her past investments, like scooping up smaller mobile startups and even hinted at a bigger billion-dollar acquisition like Tumblr.

Speaking of Tumblr, Mayer said she doesn’t think she paid too much ($1.1 billion) for the blogging service. She said there was a lot of long-term potential and Tumblr has turned into a great place for brands to find clever ways to connect with consumers.

As for the firing of De Castro, Mayer admitted that she made a mistake hiring him away from Google and that he wasn’t a good fit at Yahoo. De Castro walked away with as much as $US109 million when he was fired.

Mayer, as she always does, talked a lot about Yahoo’s mobile business too. She said there were only about 60 people working in mobile when she started at Yahoo nearly two years ago. There are now 500 people working on mobile products. But as Arrington pointed out, none of Yahoo’s mobile apps are in the top 10 rankings of Google or Apple’s app stores.

You can follow what happened during Mayer’s talk in our live notes below.

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