Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer has walked away from her post with a $23m (£18m) pay check following the completion of the online platform’s $4.48bn (£3.52bn) acquisition by telecoms provider Verizon.
The new organisation will be called Oath and will be the umbrella company for 50 media and technology brands.
Properties will include Yahoo’ and AOL’s businesses and including HuffPost, Yahoo Sports, AOL.com, Makers, Tumblr, Build Studios, Yahoo Finance, and Yahoo mail.
Mayer joined Yahoo in 2012 from search giant Google, where she was the company’s first female engineer and only its 20th employee.
She was one of a three-person team that birthed Google AdWords and later headed the maps and location services division.
In a note to staff posted on Tumblr the company Yahoo acquired for £1.1bn (£863m) in February 2016, Mayer said: “Given the inherent changes to my role, I’ll be leaving the company “Looking back on my time at Yahoo, we have confronted seemingly insurmountable business challenges, along with many surprise twists and turns.”
Tim Armstrong, former head of AOL and now CEO of Oath, said: “We’re building the future of brands using powerful technology, trusted content and differentiated data. Now that the deal is closed, we are excited to set our focus on being the best company for consumer media, and the best partner to our advertising, content and publisher partners.”
Armstrong has now confirmed reports that the company plans to lay off an estimated 15% of staff, or 2,100 of the 14,000-employee workforce. The job cuts are reported to mainly affect those in back office functions, where there are duplicate positions.
An excerpt from Mayer’s departure letter to Yahoo employees is as follows:
I want to sincerely thank every single Yahoo employee, past and present, for your contributions both large and small. I’m tremendously grateful for all of the hard work and the many sacrifices you’ve made. We always endeavored to do the right thing for our users, advertisers, shareholders, and fellow Yahoos. This has required the most impressive displays of teamwork, innovation, and resilience I’ve ever seen, and working with you has made my time as chief executive nothing short of a privilege.
Finally, I want to thank our founders, Filo and Jerry. Every entrepreneur’s wildest dream is to change the world with their ideas, and you’ve done just that. From day one, your tenacity and whimsy helped create one of the most special companies of all time – one that has employed more than 175,000 people, generated over $77bn (£60.4bn) in revenue, and has informed, connected, and entertained a large portion of humanity. You’ve inspired all of us with your brilliance, values, and passion, and I will forever be in awe of you and I will forever be your biggest fan