SOURCE: Marissa Mayer And Her COO Disagree Over The Merits Of Her First Big Deal, And Now It Might Fall Apart

A week ago, it seemed like a foregone conclusion that Yahoo was going to buy a controlling stake in Dailymotion, the YouTube-of-France, for a price around $200 million.

Amir Efrati and Sam Shechner of the WSJ broke the news.

Now the deal is in doubt, according to a source who has been chatting with Yahoo executives.

Real quick: This is just a single source getting information second-hand, so let’s be adults and be very careful with the following information. We’re sharing it because its what plugged-in people are whispering, and we assume you like it when we include you in the game of telephone.

So…Got your shake of salt in hand? Good. Let’s get to what we’re hearing.

Apparently, there is internal dissension over the deal, and Dailymotion’s owners – French telecom Orange – is getting frustrated with the delays.

Meanwhile, a new bidder has shown up. We don’t know who this bidder is.

We hear the disagreement over Dailymotion at Yahoo is at the very highest levels. Our source says Yahoo COO Henrique De Castro wants the deal and that CEO Marissa Mayer is very sceptical. 

She is “giving him a hard time” says our source.

It always seemed strange to us that Mayer would want to spend so much on a also-ran YouTube clone.

We were told by sources close to the deal that buy Dailymotion was a part of Mayer’s big picture content strategy: to reduce Yahoo’s original content costs to “essentially nothing,” do lots of partnerships with outside media brands, buy up as much user-generated content as possible, and then offer a personalised experience for the consumption of it all.

Another, simpler, explanation for the deal was that it would give Yahoo a lot more a lot more video ad inventory to sell.

Yahoo’s advertisers want to buy video ads. As things stand right now, Yahoo doesn’t have that much video inventory. Buying Dailymotion gets .

According to ComScore, Yahoo is the fifth most popular video site in the US, and the eighth most popular in the world.

If Yahoo were to take control over Dailymotion, it would nearly double the size of its video audience worldwide – from 119 million to to 230 million.

Obviously, Mayer and De Castro might eventually agree on the merits of the deal and get it done. But right now, it sounds like that’s not for certain.

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