01/23/2015 7:00 am EST


David Fried

Editor, The Buyback Letter

Whether you are searching the Web, emailing, sharing photos, or checking sports scores, the weather, or stocks, you probably touch some aspect of our Top Pick for speculative investors every day, suggests David Fried, editor of The Buyback Letter.

Yahoo (YHOO), the $46 billion tech giant, boasts Yahoo Weather, Mail, Flickr (online photo management and sharing), Sports, Tumblr (blogging platform), and partnerships with ABC, CBS, NBC, FOX, and Hulu, among other products.

CEO Marissa Mayer is struggling to turn around the company in turbulent high tech waters, while activist investors heckle and second guess her. The game is on at Yahoo, which is attempting to define whether it is a media company or a tech company, or some of both.

Part of the conflict with Yahoo comes with a recent windfall. Yahoo owns a 24% stake in Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. (BABA), China's biggest online commerce company, which went public in September.

Yahoo realized a whopping $9 billion gain from selling some Alibaba shares in the IPO. Yahoo still retains about 15% of Alibaba.  Mayer has lately been heckled by activist investors who would like to tell her how to spend the money.

While Yahoo's display ad business won't likely grow, the company has assets (Tumblr and Yahoo Screen) and potential to grow an enormous video business.

Yahoo reaches a billion people a month, still generates a lot of cash even though investing heavily, and while it is under fire, it is worth noting that Yahoo’s market cap is about equal to the value of its stake in Alibaba. Yahoo has repurchased 6.6% of its shares in the last 12 months.

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