paidContent 50: The world’s most successful digital media companies

6. Yahoo

Diversified, United States (Public)

Last year’s rank: #2

Digital Content Revenue

$4,989,199,000 (100% of total)

Digital Snapshot

If you go by metrics alone, Yahoo looks like a goldmine: nearly 700 million monthly uniques, up 12 percent over a tough 2010; U.S. leader in categories including news, finance and sports.

Key Move

Carol Bartz’s firing as CEO was the biggest of Yahoo’s headlines last year – the company has been an executive merry-go-round, with Scott Thompson, Ross Levinsohn (interim) and, finally, Google’s Marissa Mayer taking the helm. Just as Yahoo’s boardroom travails have been controversial, even comical, the ongoing perception lingers that the company is a once-great juggernaut with no sense of direction anymore. But, for all the negative perception, Yahoo continues to pull in large amounts from its portfolio.

Our Methodology

Pretty much all of Yahoo’s revenue is from services related to digital content and advertising.
Source: SEC 10k: 2011 Annual Return

— Staci D. Kramer