The reorganization will create three organizational units that report to President Sue Decker.
The first group, named the Audience Products Division, will be lead by Ash Patel. He was previously responsible for Platforms and Infrastructure. He’ll oversee the management of existing and future product lines.
The second group will handle the U.S. region and be helmed by Hillary Schneider. She was previously head of Global Partner Solutions.
Group three, an “insights and strategy” team still missing its captain, will take responsibility for company wide data gathering and analysis.
The Technology Group may also see some changes but will remain under the hand of January hire, CTO Ari Balogh. One of the new initiatives coming from him will be a “Cloud Computing” initiative.
Describing the changes, Sue Decker said in a statement, “The changes we are making today will help deliver superior global products for users and enable faster and better decision making.”
Decker is confident the changes will lead to improvements. Quoted in the Wall Street Journal, she said “there are a lot of people evaluating us right now and they should be. I feel we are really on the right track.”
Some analysts and watchers aren’t so sure. One blog post discussed the changes today under the title “Yet Another Unsolicited Yahoo Turnaround Strategy – YAUYTS.” Charlene Li, an analyst at Forrester characterized the move as “akin to moving deck chairs on the titanic.”
It is hard not to agree with them. It’s hard not be skeptical. As much as Yahoo’s has great assets, the excessive recent losses of senior staff, the deal with Google, the fight with Icahn and the ongoing distractions that came out of the Micro-hoo merger mania - not to mention Yahoo’s apparent strategic missteps in dealing with Search (they had 28,8 percent of the market in 2006 to Google’s 43.7%. As of February 2008, Yahoo had 21.6% to Google’s 59.2 (via Comscore)).
In the face of it all, the current adjustments seem more like smoke and mirrors than substantive, positive, change.
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