With stealth layoffs in the works
Marissa Mayer joked about layoffs not long ago, but now it looks like she’s getting down to business.
The Yahoo CEO reportedly got nervous laughs after telling employees earlier this month not to expect layoffs “this week.” Now it looks like Mayer has a list breaking down which company units will see cuts as well as that will be spared and those worthy of further investment.
Mayer has an “Invest/Maintain/Kill” list, according to Re/code, that will help determine the course of the company’s upcoming cuts, most of which are expected to follow Yahoo’s ”YHOO” quarterly earnings report next Tuesday.
Reports at the beginning of January indicated that Yahoo is planning to cut up to 10% of its 10,000 employees after previously hiring consulting firm McKinsey and Co. to advise on the company’s reorganization efforts. Yahoo has already reduced its headcount by roughly 14% over the past year, down from 12,500 employees in 2014.
The cuts would come as Yahoo faces activist pressure from shareholder Starboard Value to oust Mayer and several other executives, which follows Starboard’s successful push for Yahoo to abandon a planned spinoff of its Alibaba Group ”BABA” shares. Yahoo is instead now considering a sale of its core Internet business.
According to Re/code, the restructuring will likely begin with a round of stealth layoffs before moving on to more substantial cuts, which could focus on international assets and some of Yahoo’s underperforming media sites. Other steady media properties like Yahoo Finance are likely to fall under the “maintain” category, while mobile search is the most likely candidate for added investment.
Mayer is expected to offer further guidance on Yahoo’s reorganization plans next week, including the tax-free spinoff of its core business that could take at least a year to come to fruition. The company has reportedly already rebuffed some potential buyers for the business, including a handful of private equity firms.