UPDATE, 10:15 am, PT on 11/25/13. Yahoo confirms the hiring of Couric, who will begin her interview show for the Internet giant early in 2014. Below is the story we posted earlier this moring.
Katie Couric "is close to finalizing an extensive deal with Internet giant Yahoo, according to multiple sources," The Hollywood Reporter’s Live Feed blog has reported in an exclusive story by Marisa Guthrie.
The story says Couric is talking to Yahoo about "hosting a newsmaker interview program that would be featured on the site’s highly trafficked home page." In August 2013, for example, the comScore Internet traffic service reported that Yahoo’s sites had 196,564,000 unique visitors during the month of July, beating out the 192,251,000 unique visitors that visited Google’s sites, according to The New York Times’ Bits blog.
Kara Swisher at All Things D, who first reported Yahoo’s interest in Couric in August, writes that "The deal is set to be announced [today]. Monday, [Nov. 25, 2013,] said multiple sources at the company, which could designate Couric as ‘global news anchor’ of the Silicon Valley Internet giant."
The THR story adds: "Couric is said to have been personally wooed by Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer, who has already lured New York Times tech columnist David Pogue in an effort to pump up the Internet giant’s media presence. Couric earlier this year bowed a commentary feature on Yahoo News called ‘Katie’s Take,’ which has mostly been repurposed material from her talk show. (ABC News and Yahoo have had a news sharing partnership since 2011.)"
The THR article also says, "ABC News declined comment. But an executive told THR: ‘Katie is an incredible journalist and this was an opportunity that she couldn’t pass up. Thanks to the powerful association between ABC News and Yahoo we know that Katie will continue to work closely with us and welcome her on our air anytime.’"
The THR story adds, "Couric’s daytime talk show is in its second and almost certainly final season on ABC. She will complete the season and sources at Disney-ABC insist that a decision about the future of ‘Katie’ will not be made until sometime in December after executives get a look at the November sweeps ratings.
"The original deal — said to be worth $40 million — encompassed two seasons of the daytime talk show and three years at ABC News; it is standard for news contracts to be three years. It’s unclear how much the news division is paying toward Couric’s contract or how much she’ll walk away with in an early exit."