Ross Levinsohn Leaves Yahoo
Ross Levinsohn is leaving Yahoo.
The move comes two weeks after the Web portal named longtime Google executive Marissa Mayer as its new CEO.
Levinsohn, a former Fox Interactive Media executive, took over as Yahoo's interim CEO on May 13 after Scott Thompson stepped down earlier this year on the heels of a resume scandal. Levinsohn had been in charge of media and advertising sales divisions as the head of the Americas unit and had been widely expected to fill the CEO position on a permanent basis.
In a memo to staff from Mayer that was posted online by AllThingsD, Mayer wrote: "Ross has been an important and powerful contributor at Yahoo since he joined in 2010. During May and June, Ross stepped into an incredibly tough role as interim CEO and did a terrific job -- he really helped keep the company moving, closed important deals and assembled a very talented team. I am very grateful to Ross for his leadership and work throughout his tenure at Yahoo. His contributions will be missed."
Sources told AllThingsD that Levinsohn and Mayer have been negotiating his exit for several days.
Levinsohn, whose last day at Yahoo will be Tuesday, reportedly has no current plans for another gig.
He joined Yahoo in late 2010 from Fuse Capitol, in the regime of then-CEO Carol Bartz. But his highest-profile job before Yahoo was as head of News Corp.’s Fox Interactive Media unit, where he was responsible for the company's purchase of the once-hot social networking site MySpace.
Levinsohn's resume also includes stints at CBS Sportsline, advertising firm Saatchi and Saatchi and Internet search engine AltaVista.
When Yahoo announced Mayer as its new CEO on July 16, the company took by surprise the many Wall Street analysts who had assumed Yahoo's board would stick with Levinsohn.
Where Levinsohn's expertise is in Internet advertising and media, Mayer is perceived as more tech-savvy. She most recently was vp local, maps and location services at Google, where she had been overseeing more than 1,000 product managers and was part of the search giant's operating committee.
Mayer is the fifth CEO of the pioneering Internet company in the past five years, with Bartz preceding Thompson and Yahoo co-founder Jerry Yang serving as CEO for 18 months prior to Bartz.
A regulatory filing recently revealed that Mayer, already worth an estimated $300 million because she was an early employee at Google, could earn $71 million over five years.