New Yahoo! CEO Marissa Mayer has a full plate. She is tasked with playing catch-up in a highly competitive marketplace by betting Yahoo!’s future on the burgeoning use of mobile devices. In an effort to make up for lost time, Mayer plans on working with strategic partner and software provider Microsoft Corp to employ technology such as automated buying to strengthen Yahoo!’s tenuous display advertising business.
First, Yahoo! needs to trim the fat from unprofitable operations. Mayer plans on jettisoning unprofitable operations such as the South Korean business, where Yahoo is outgunned by inexpensive local rivals who control the market. Secondly, Mayer plans on focusing on smaller acquisitions rather than attempting to buy the company’s way out of the financial doldrums through larger acquisitions.
There is already a silver lining emanating from Yahoo!’s black cloud. The internet company’s shares rose 4% to $16.50 last week under Mayer at the helm. To date, she has received high marks under her capable leadership. She has been credited for understanding that the ship needs to be stabilized before it can sail forward. Problems aside, Yahoo! still enjoys 7 million users every month, ranking it as one of the largest internet companies globally. Rather than stay the course established by predecessor Ross Levinsohn, Mayer plans on chartering a new direction that takes advantage of the new user-friendly technology that is transforming how society interacts with the internet.
Although Mayer’s new strategy is not all that different from former Yahoo! execs, she is the first to actually have a plan on how to implement a clear vision of Yahoo!’s future.