Here's How Much All That Free Food Will Cost Yahoo

Marissa Mayer Lunch

Photo: Fortune Live Media

Ex-Googler Marissa Mayer’s first big move as Yahoo CEO is bringing a very Google-y perk to Yahoo’s Sunnyvale headquarters: free food for all.It’s a very smart move. It will help Yahoo compete for recruits with Google, Facebook, and countless startups that already give employees free food. It will boost morale at a downtrodden company.

But how much will it cost?

Back in 2008, we spoke with a source familiar with how much Google spends to feed its employees free food: about $20/employee over 251 working days per year. 

Let’s assume  Mayer will insist on Yahoo having the same quality of food as she did at Google, so the cost will be about the same.

So, free food will cost Yahoo…

  • ~$5,000 per employee per year.
  • ~$20 million per year.

Right now, only Yahoo’s 4,000 or so employees based in Sunnyvale, Santa Clara, and San Francisco will get free food.

If the company expands the perk to its other 10,000 employees in New York, Santa Monica and elsewhere, the cost will rise to about $75 million per year.

$20 million and $75 million seem like a lot of money, but truly, those sums are pocket change for an enterprise the size of Yahoo, which has generated almost $5 billion in revenue over the past twelve months.

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