Yahoo has announced that the president of PayPal, Scott Thompson (right) will take over as CEO of the company following Carol Bartz being fired last September.
Thompson, who has been running PayPal since 2008, is seen as a respected name in internet circles however he faces a mammoth task in getting Yahoo back to the position it held at the height of its powers.
Bartz was fired over the phone last September after she had failed to turn around the fortunes of the company. CFO Timothy Morse was installed as interim CEO and he will now return to his previous position.
Despite Thompson is a respected figure, Yahoo shares were down 2 per cent in premarket trading this morning. "It’s probably a slight negative, because it makes the sale of the entire company to someone like Microsoft less likely," said Brett Harriss, an analyst at Gabelli & Co, which owns Yahoo shares. "He’s certainly a competent manager and he’s certainly been successful at PayPal."
Carol Bartz who was fired as CEO of Yahoo! in September.
One of the first tasks facing the new CEO is to address the issue of Yahoo’s Asian assets, including its stake in China’s Alibaba Group. Recently reports have suggested that Yahoo could be looking to reduce its stake in Alibaba, but if this fails to happen, then the Chinese company could be lining up a take-over bid.
Thompson was unsurprisingly enthusiastic about the prospect of taking the helm of the slowly sinking internet behemoth: "Yahoo! is an industry icon and I am very excited about the prospect of working with one of the great teams in the online world to deliver Yahoo!'s next era of success. Yahoo! has a rich history and a solid foundation to build on, and its continued user engagement is one of the many reasons for my enthusiasm.”
Although Yahoo still has millions of users spread across services such as Yahoo! Mail, Yahoo! News and Flickr it has fallen behind the likes of Google and Facebook and Thompson faces an uphill struggle to revamp the one time industry giant.