Sat, Apr 27, 2013 - Page 15 News List

Yahoo chairman Amoroso joins boardroom exodus

AP, SAN FRANCISCO

Yahoo could use a revolving door in its boardroom.

In the latest exit, chairman Alfred Amoroso will become the eighth Yahoo Inc director to depart since early last year. He will leave the board on June 25 at Yahoo’s annual shareholders’ meeting, the company said on Thursday.

Amoroso, 63, is giving up the chairmanship immediately, prompting Yahoo to appoint Maynard Webb Jr to handle the duties on an interim basis.

Yahoo indicated it would not add another director after Amoroso departs, leaving the Internet company with 10 directors.

Amoroso and Webb joined Yahoo’s board 14 months ago when four longtime directors stepped down under shareholder pressure. Yahoo cofounder Jerry Yang (楊致遠) started the exodus when he left the board a month earlier. Finally, late last year, Intuit Inc CEO Brad Smith and Weather Channel CEO David Kenny stepped down.

Former accounting executive Sue James is now Yahoo’s longest-serving director. She came on board three years ago. The other directors, including Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer, have been appointed since February last year.

The rapid turnover probably suits Mayer, who has been trying to infuse Yahoo with new talent and ideas since she defected from a longtime job at Google Inc to tackle the challenge of turning around one of the Internet’s best-known companies.

Although Yahoo’s Web site remains one of the Internet’s top destinations, Web surfers had been visiting less frequently and staying for shorter periods. That problem has made it more difficult for Yahoo to sell the online advertising that generates most of its revenue.

Until a slight increase last year, Yahoo’s revenue had been steadily declining since 2008, while rivals such as Google and Facebook Inc reveled in robust growth. The financial funk exasperated Yahoo shareholders, triggering a backlash that ultimately reshaped the board. One of the dissident shareholders, hedge fund manager Daniel Loeb, won a board seat, along with two of his allies, turnaround specialist Harry Wilson and MTV executive Michael Wolf.

Amoroso became Yahoo’s chairman 11 months ago after the company parted ways with one of its former CEOs, Scott Thompson. In a statement on Thursday, Amoroso said he only intended to serve as chairman for a year.

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