Yahoo to buy search-software maker Inktomi

LOS ANGELES: Yahoo is all set to buy Internet search-software maker Inktomi for $235 million. Through the acquisition, the portal looks to strengthening its position in the growing Web search business.

A Reuters report indicates that this will help Yahoo lessen its dependence on Google. Inktomi's paid-search capabilities will generate advertising income for Yahoo, which is perceiving Google as an increasing threat with the recent launch of its online shopping site and a news Web site. According to comScore Networks' Internet audience measurement service, Yahoo ranked number two in November among all search engines with 40.6 million unique visitors. Of the top 15 such sites, three were powered by Inktomi's search services.

Reports indicate that Inktomi has been losing money and therefore reduced its staff by 20 per cent a couple of months ago. The deal between it and Yahoo is expected to close in the first quarter of 2003, subject to approval by regulators and Inktomi stockholders.

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