Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ:YHOO) announced five-year alliance with the Mozilla Foundation to be the preferred search engine on Firefox Web browser in the U.S., displacing Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOGL)’s decade-old dominance. Google’s official contract will end by the end of November.
The new partnership is expected to allow significant opportunities to Yahoo! to make a comeback in the Internet’s ad market. However, only time will say how much Yahoo! could make out of the Firebox, where the Google’ Chrome browser is dominating the space.
Firefox now account for approximately 100 billion search requests per year, from global worldwide web users. StatCounter’s latest number for October 2014 highlighted Chrome as the top browser accounting for 45% of global browser market share. Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT)’s Internet Explorer followed the list with 20% share and Firefox with 18% share.
Marissa Mayer, CEO of Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ:YHOO), expressed that the alliance will create a share gain as it integrates Yahoo search into Firefox browser for PCs and mobile devices. While the agreement was said to be based on ‘guaranteed’ revenue sharing terms, Mayer did not disclose much about financial terms. She regarded this as one of the largest ‘independently directed’ search share opportunities in the market.
One thing for sure, Firefox users will get the first chance to access the new look, more immersive Yahoo search engine with rich graphics and photos.
Mayer also declined to comment on estimated boost Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ:YHOO) could get from the deal. Currently, Yahoo holds just about 10% of the U.S. search market share on desktop PCs. Research firm comScore, estimates Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOGL) and Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT)’s share at 67% and 20%, respectively.
Setback for Google
Mozilla Foundation is considering viable options in different parts of the world, as a replacement to its long-standing partnership with Google. Earlier, it replaced Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOGL) with Baidu Inc (ADR) (NASDAQ:BIDU)’s search engine in China and with Yandex NV in Russia. In the U.S., Firefox holds 10.4% browser market share on PCs, smartphones and tablets.