Yahoo COO Departs Amid Restructuring

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Internet titan Yahoo has announced a major strategic reorganization which will see the company re-align into three primary units focussing on technology, advertisers and publishers, and “audience.” The reorganization will also mark the departure of Chief Operating Office Dan Rosenweig.

“We’re moving aggressively to deliver the most possible value to our key customers—audiences, advertisers and publishers—and seize the major new opportunities we see ahead for the Internet,” said Terry Semel, Yahoo chairman and CEO. “The Internet is continuing to grow and evolve at a rapid pace, and we’re reshaping Yahoo to be a leader in this transformation, just as we did successfully five years ago.”

Yahoo’s new “Audience” group will work on creating “unique, tailored, and ngaging experiences” for Yahoo users—this is the group which will develop and operate Yahoo’s core search, email, media, communications, and community features, as well as the company’s expanding portfolio of mobile offerings. Yahoo hasn’t named a leader for this group, but says it has launched a search for an “experienced executive” to head it up. (Maybe try the “experienced executive” button in Yahoo’s Advanced Search?)

Yahoo’s Advertiser & Publisher group will focus on how advertisers reach the Yahoo’s “audience,” along with providing online advertising and marketplaces for publishers and online businesses. The group will be headed by Susan Decker, who’s services as Yahoo’s CFO since 2000. Finally, Yahoo’s Technology Group will essentially work as an IT staff for the entire Yahoo business, as well as creating “global, scalable platforms” to make Yahoo services available worldwide; the group will also be asks with developing new platforms for social media environments and creating next-generation advertising systems.

Although Yahoo has long been one of the most successful of Internet businesses, it has been facing increased competition from Google and Microsoft, and was apparently blindsided by the sudden popularity of social networking. The reorganization falls a month after the leak of the now-infamous “Peanut Butter” memo, in which Yahoo senior VP Brad Garlinghouse characterized the company’s efforts as overly scattered, recommended one in five Yahoo employees get the axe, and that the company should focus on core areas.

Yahoo announced no job cuts with its reorganization…save one. Yahoo Chief Operating Officer David Rosenweig will leave the company at the end of March, 2007. No replacement has been named.

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