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Marissa Mayer lets go the Yahoo COO she headhunted

Off with that hunted head
Thu Jan 16 2014, 12:55

DRIFTING INTERNET PORTAL Yahoo has parted company with the COO that it poached from Google not much more than a year ago.

Marissa Mayer recruited Henrique de Castro away from Google last year. This year though she is done with him and has decided that he is no longer a good fit as Yahoo's chief operating officer.

"During my own reflection, I made the difficult decision that our COO, Henrique de Castro, should leave the company," said Mayer in a widely reported internal memo.

More, but not much more, information is presented in a filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), where Yahoo made its official declaration.

"Henrique de Castro, Chief Operating Officer of Yahoo! Inc. (the "Company"), will be leaving the Company effective January 16, 2014. Mr. de Castro will receive the severance benefits provided for in his Employment Offer Letter, dated October 15, 2012, Severance Agreement, dated February 28, 2013, and equity award agreements," it said glibly.

There has not been a full explanation as to why de Castro has been let go, but he had been put in charge of Yahoo's advertising business.

"Henrique is an incredibly accomplished and rigorous business leader, and I'm personally excited to have him join Yahoo's strong leadership team," said Mayer in October 2012.

"His operational experience in Internet advertising and his proven success in structuring and scaling global organisations make him the perfect fit for Yahoo as we propel the business to its next phase of growth."

De Castro has spent 20 years as an executive so perhaps he will not be short on opportunities. When he joined Yahoo he did so with a very positive spin.

"The combination of Yahoo's unique properties with high quality content, its renewed focus on outstanding user experience and its massive reach bring tremendous value to users, advertisers and partners," said de Castro when he was appointed as Yahoo's COO.

"This is a pivotal point in Yahoo!'s history, and I believe strongly in the opportunity ahead. I can't wait to join Marissa and the team and get started."

How compelling his leadership was apparently has been seen, and whatever audacious plans de Castro had to make the exclamation mark work again have been shelved. µ


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