Is Yahoo’s reorganization a real strategy or a Hail Mary pass? Tell us what you think in the comments below.
In a memo to employees published at All Things Digital, Thompson said:
This is among the most important changes we’re making: we must bring some of our best product designers and engineers much, much closer to consumer needs and demands. Many of our top engineers will continue building on our foundation platforms and technology to continue to drive speed and scale. But to ensure we really know and can serve our customers, we’ll also deploy top design and engineering talent into our Consumer business units, directly supporting our users’ favorite Yahoo! products to ensure we move much faster and meet customer needs with every product we deliver.
The core business units will be Media, led by Ross Levinsohn; Connections, involving search, communications and social properties such as Yahoo mail, messenger, Flickr and Answers, headed by Shashi Seth; and Commerce, with a new team focused on autos, shopping, travel, jobs, personals and real estate. That group will be led by a player to be named later. All Things D believes Commerce will be led by former PayPal product chief Sam Shraugher, who didn’t get the top job at PayPal when Thompson left. Interestingly, Shraugher resigned from PayPal yesterday.
Mark Morrissey, who previously led Yahoo’s search business, will head the Technology group and oversee its research and development arm, Yahoo Labs, which has seen several key staff leave recently. He and David Dibble, who runs the company’s data centers, have been charged with finding ways to capitalize on the data from Yahoo’s 700 million visitors.
Thompson stressed the importance of moving quickly:
To be very clear, our highest priority is winning in our core business, and that will earn us the right to pursue new growth opportunities.
There’s a lot to do, and that’s why I can’t stress enough that we all need to focus on getting stuff done. Getting stuff done is shorthand for eliminating bureaucracy and barriers so we can all innovate as fast as our customers and the industry require.