Reports: Yahoo Shedding Executives, Overhauling Products

By Mike Caggeso
Associate Editor

After months of tumultuous shareholder temperament, Yahoo! Inc. (YHOO) is giving its board and product line a makeover to convince traders of its value after turning down Microsoft Corp's (MSFT) $47.5 billion offer, according to reports.

President Susan Decker is pushing a plan to roll several product groups under one roof (such as mail, search and home-page divisions), The Wall Street Journal reported, citing sources close to the matter.

Four executives - Brad Garlinghouse (who oversees e-mail and instant messaging), Vish Makhijani (general manager of web search), Qi Lu (top engineer for search marketing) and Joshua Schachter (founder of social bookmarking site, delicious) are leaving the company, according to TechCrunch.

Early last week, Jeff Weiner, executive vice president of the network division, left the company to work in venture capital.

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At least nine officials may have decided to leave since the deal's rejection, Bloomberg News reported, and the reorganization could squeeze more out the door.

If billionaire investor Carl Icahn had his way, the next to go would be Yahoo Chief Executive Jerry Yang, whom Icahn said "completely botched" a profitable merger with Microsoft.

"Time to Move On"

Yang, on the other hand, is determined to keep moving forward and prove his company is worth more than Microsoft's $33 a share offer.

A week and a half ago, Yahoo announced a partnership with rival Google Inc. (GOOG) to enhance its online advertisement business. The deal will use Google's superior search technology in exchange for Google ads appearing on Yahoo's search results. Yang said the deal will generate an extra $800 million a year in revenue.

"Clearly, it is time to move on, and we believe that this agreement with Google does so by strengthening our competitiveness," Yang said.

The loss of top brass doesn't help in the uphill battle Yahoo faces. The company's profits have declined for eight consecutive quarters.
At noon, Yahoo's shares were trading at $22.17 a piece, down $0.56 (or 2.46%).

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