NEW YORK: Verizon Communications, the US telecoms company, has announced plans to acquire Yahoo for $4.83bn in cash, in a move that will end the search engine's 21-year history as an independent company.

According to a joint press release, Yahoo will be integrated with AOL, which Verizon acquired last year for $4.4bn, and gives Verizon access to Yahoo's active user base of more than 1bn people.

Subject to regulatory approval, Verizon also will take over Yahoo's advertising technology tools, patents and other assets, such as search and mail, which it hopes will enable the combined entity to become a major media company to compete with the likes of Google.

"The acquisition of Yahoo will put Verizon in a highly competitive position as a top global mobile media company, and help accelerate our revenue stream in digital advertising," said Lowell McAdam, Chairman and CEO of Verizon.

Tim Armstrong, CEO of AOL, praised Yahoo for what it had achieved and said the transaction was about "unleashing Yahoo's full potential" and building on their collective synergies.

"Combining Verizon, AOL and Yahoo will create a new powerful competitive rival in mobile media, and an open, scaled alternative offering for advertisers and publishers," he said.

The deal involves Yahoo's core operating businesses, so it does not include Yahoo's stake in Chinese internet giant Alibaba, nor its shares in Yahoo Japan, but the combined group will still control more than 25 brands.

These include Flurry, the mobile app analytics service, Gemini, the native and search advertising solution, as well as Flickr, the image-hosting site, and Tumblr, the micro-blogging social network.

Another key asset that Verizon will acquire is Yahoo Mail, one of the most popular email services in the world with around 225m monthly active users.

Marissa Mayer, the CEO of Yahoo whose future at the company is uncertain, said that Yahoo is a company that has "changed the world" and would continue to do so through its combination with Verizon and AOL.

"This transaction also sets up a great opportunity for Yahoo to build further distribution and accelerate our work in mobile, video, native advertising and social," she added.

Data sourced from Verizon, Yahoo, CNBC; additional content by Warc staff