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Yahoo's Mayer: We'll spend wisely from any Alibaba windfall

Just look at Yahoo's track record, the CEO says, declaring Yahoo will be "good stewards" of the money it stands to make from Alibaba's IPO.

Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer Joan E. Solsman/CNET

NEW YORK -- The day after Alibaba filed for a highly anticipated public market debut, Yahoo Chief Executive Marissa Mayer said the company will be "good stewards of capital," pointing to past sales of portions of its Alibaba stake.

Yahoo owns a 22.6 percent stake in Alibaba, the Chinese e-commerce giant that Tuesday filed for an initial public offering in what could be the biggest such deal ever in the US. After Alibaba's IPO, Yahoo could end up with billions in cash on its balance sheet, and anticipation for the IPO has contributed to the doubling of Yahoo's stock in the last year. Both give Mayer, who took the helm of the company in July 2012, enhanced flexibility to acquire and invest as she works to turn around Yahoo, what was once one of the foremost Internet companies that has since been eclipsed by the likes of Google, Facebook, and Amazon.

Speaking here at TechCrunch Disrupt, Mayer said Yahoo's investment in Alibaba has created value for the company.

"We intend to be a good stewards of capital," she said. She noted that when Yahoo previously sold part of its Alibaba stake, the company returned some of the money to shareholders and used some to make "smart investments" in talent, new technology, and acquisitions like Tumblr.

"We know that this is of critical importance to our investors," she said. "We will continue to be good stewards of capital."

Yahoo shares were recently down $2.29, or 6.3 percent, at $34.20.