Yahoo poaches Google executive
Yahoo has appointed Google's Marissa Mayer to become its new CEO, turning to an engineer with established Silicon Valley credentials to turn around the struggling former Internet powerhouse.
Ms Mayer (37) edged out front-runner and acting chief executive Ross Levinsohn to become Yahoo's third CEO in a year.
She hopes to stem losses to Google and Facebook - which her high-profile predecessors failed to do.
Her hiring signalled the Internet company is likely to renew its focus on Web technology and products rather than beefing up online content.
Ms Mayer, Google's 20th employee and first female engineer, has led a number of its businesses, and was credited for envisioning the clean, simple Google search interface still in use today, a major selling point for Web surfers.
This is a very competitive and a tough space. I don't think that success is by any means guaranteed," she said.
"My focus is always end-users, great technology and terrific talent."
Shares of Yahoo, worth less than half their value during its dotcom heyday, gained 2 per cent to $15.97 in after-hours trading.
"It's a statement on Yahoo's part to go with a product-centric CEO choice. It's a very big commitment on the board's part to pursue a product-centric strategy," venture capitalist Marc Andreessen said.
Tech companies can be turned around, he said, citing as an example Apple Inc, which had teetered on the brink of bankruptcy before Steve Jobs returned to the company he co-founded.
"It's a big job that Marissa is stepping into," Mr Andreessen said.
Last responsible for Google's local and location services, Ms Mayer joins fellow female tech chieftains Meg Whitman of Hewlett Packard Co, Virginia Rometty of International Business Machines Corp and Ursula Burns of Xerox Corp."
A lot of people did not believe that Yahoo could get someone of the calibre of a Marissa Mayer to become the CEO at this stage," said S&P Capital IQ equity analyst Scott Kessler.