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Yahoo to buy teenager's brain child

By Oliver Joy, CNN
updated 12:13 PM EDT, Tue March 26, 2013
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • The Summly app delivers snapshots of news stories to its users on mobile
  • D'Aloisio started the company at 15 and gained support from Aston Kutcher and Stephen Fry
  • In November, Yahoo! boss Marissa Mayer said the company would focus on mobile

(CNN) -- Silicon Valley giant Yahoo is turning to a 17-year-old to boost the company's mobile development by acquiring the teenager's tech start-up in a reported multi-million dollar deal.

Summly -- the brain child of London-based boy genius Nick D'Aloisio -- delivers automated snapshots of news stories to its users on mobile devices and formats articles for the small screen.

D'Aloisio started the company when he was 15 and quickly attracted investors, including Hong Kong billionaire Li Ka-Shing and Hollywood stars Ashton Kutcher and Stephen Fry.

In a statement on the Summly website, teenager D'Aloisio paid tribute to his friends, family and users while adding that Yahoo! is the "perfect fit" for the start-up company, which received Apple's Best Apps of 2012 award for Intuitive Touch.

Much ado over Yahoo
Was Marissa Mayer out of line?

In November, Yahoo boss Marissa Mayer said the U.S. multinational would start focusing more on mobile strategy particularly on news, sports and apps.

In a blog post announcing the deal, Adam Cahan, senior vice president of mobile and emerging products at Yahoo, wrote: "Mobile devices are at the center of how we engage with the people experiences and interests we love."

Cahan added: "Most articles and web pages were formatted for browsing with mouse clicks. The ability to skim them on a phone or a tablet can be a real challenge... Summly solves this by delivering snapshots of stories, giving you a simple and elegant way to find the news you want, faster than ever before."

Although the details of the deal are not disclosed, the acquisition is likely to make a millionaire of teenager D'Aloisio, who will now join Yahoo! Cahan asks for Summly users to "stay tuned" as the app gets ready to reappear as part of Yahoo!'s mobile arsenal.

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