Shares are down about 1% after CEO Scott Thompson sent employees a memo outlining a new corporate structure for the growth-challenged Internet company. Instead of describing a bold strategic vision, it seems to merely push the peas around the plate by creating three corporate groups — Consumer, Regions, and Technology — effective on May 1. “Each of the three groups will be charged with delivering the best customer experiences and have very clear accountability for getting results,” Thompson says. The Consumer operation appears to be the most important and is, itself, split into three units: There’s Media, to be run by Ross Levinsohn — former president of Fox Interactive Media — that will include the company’s news and information web sites. The goal, Thompson says, is to “drive real differentiation into our leading media experiences.” Connections, under Shashi Seth, will handle search, communication and social network functions including Mail, Messenger, and Flickr. They’re “charged with fundamentally re-imagining how we design and deliver the next generation of these foundational Yahoo! experiences.” And Commerce — the top exec here is still undetermined — will develop sales opportunities beginning with Autos, Shopping, Travel, Jobs, Personal, and Real Estate. In addition to the Consumer operations, Regions will work with advertisers in the Americas, Europe and Asia. And Technology will build the company’s infrastructure. Thompson’s announcement comes about a week after he began to layoff 2,000 employees, about 14% of Yahoo’s workforce. Also last week the company lost its Chief Product Officer, Blake Irving. Thompson says in today’s memo that Irving “will work closely with the new leaders over the next several weeks to ensure a smooth transition.” Yahoo has lost about 10.7% of its market value over the last 12 months. It faces a proxy battle from hedge fund Third Point, which owns 5.8% of Yahoo’s shares: It wants investors to elect to the board its CEO Daniel Loeb, along with corporate restructuring expert Harry Wilson, media consultant Michael Wolf, and former NBCUniversal CEO Jeff Zucker.
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