Yahoo said in a statement,
Per the agreement and our promise not to screw it up, Tumblr will be independently operated as a separate business. David Karp will remain CEO. The product, service and brand will continue to be defined and developed separately with the same Tumblr irreverence, wit, and commitment to empower creators.
Rumors had been circulating that the deal was imminent, although until this morning neither company was confirming whether or not talks really were taking place.
According to Yahoo, Tumblr gets 75 million blog posts a day, and already has 50 billion posts hosted through its service. All of that content will now be integrated into Yahoo!’s search system, and the companies will be working together to “create advertising opportunities that are seamless and enhance the user experience.”
Yahoo! will also be hosting a media event at 5PM eastern time this afternoon where CEO Marissa Mayer will be talking about “something special.” Some insider sources, like those speaking with Bloomberg, have said this afternoon’s announcement will be about improvements to the Flickr photo sharing service.
The Tumblr purchase still has to pass through the usual regulatory approval process, which Yahoo! expects will happen some time in the second half of 2013.
Yahoo! says the deal is about enhancing user experiences for its users and Tumblr users. That may be the case, but it sure feels like a great way for Yahoo! to build a captive audience for advertising revenue tied to over 50 billion blog posts.