Incoming CEOs invariably build their own teams, it’s just a matter of time. John Riccitiello did some housekeeping when he rejoined Electronic Arts, and Carol Bartz was certain to do it at Yahoo. Thursday, after six weeks of “being in student mode” and “slowly getting smarter about what makes [the] place tick,” she announced her sweeping changes.
CFO Blake Jorgensen is out. He’s tendered his resignation but will stay on until a replacement is found.
CTO Ari Balogh will keep his title and also take the added moniker of EVP of Products. In the combined roll, he will be at the helm of a newly created “Products” group responsible for all of the “vision, strategy, and quality of every product [Yahoo creates] regardless of region, device format or category.”
Programming, partnerships and sales will be handled by two groups, distinguished by region. The North American side will fall to the charge of Hilary Schneider, EVP, North American Region. Among her tasks, the onetime CEO of Knight Ridder Digital and Red Herring will also oversee Yahoo’s global mobile initiatives. (David Ko, working under Schneider, will be the lead for Yahoo’s mobile business, strategy and monetization teams. He’ll replace a departing Marco Boerries). The International Group’s head is yet to be determined.
For marketing, a new Chief Marketing Officer position is being created. Elisa Steele, who worked with Bartz at NetApp (Bartz is on the board, Steele was Senior VP, Corporate Marketing), will lead the group beginning March 23rd. She’ll be responsible for steering the company’s global marketing strategy.
To streamline internal technology operations, a Service Engineering and Operations Team will launch with David Dibble acting as its Senior VP. The group will provide operational support through the delivery of common technology services and infrastructure. “We’re bringing service engineering together as one group because these engineers bring expertise that is best applied horizontally,” Bartz said in a memo explaining the choice.
To keep the customer’s needs front and center, another new slot on the Org Chart (see thumbnail) is being created for a Customer Advocacy Group. The leader of this support organization is yet to be determined.
In blog post Bartz said she is “singularly focused on providing [customers] with awesome products, period.” The goal of the new structure is to simplify the company’s decision making processes and give customers a stronger voice – both toward that end.
Assisting Bartz directly will be Joel Jones in a newly named Chief of Staff role. Jones, who has been Yahoo’s VP of Corporate Strategy for the last five months, was an associate principal at McKinsey and Co. for 7 years before joining Yahoo. Exactly what the Chief of Staff role will entail is unclear.
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