Yahoo CEO: We've “been doing way too much”

Earlier this month, Yahoo announced that it would lay off 2000 workers, around 14% of its workforce, as the organisation restructures itself following a difficult couple of years in which it has, to put it mildly, lost its way.

Its current CEO, Scott Thompson, seems to understand the scale of the challenge that the company faces, and in his first full-quarter earnings call since becoming its chief executive, he outlined plans to help Yahoo find its feet and move towards a period of growth. As TechCrunch reported, the key to success, as he sees it, will be ‘focus’.

“Yahoo has been doing way too much for too long and was only doing a few things really well,” he said. Indeed, that’s been a major criticism across tech media and the wider web, as customers, investors and industry observers – as well as the company itself, it seems – have increasingly struggled to understand and define exactly what role the company fills in an ever more crowded market.

Despite making changes since taking the company’s reins, Thompson remains unsatisfied with the results so far. The next big step will be to shut down or “transition” around 50 Yahoo properties, services and brands, so that the company can focus around some of its more successful products, such as Sports, Finance and Yahoo Mail.

While he acknowledges that shutting some of these services might impact short-term revenue, he believes that in the longer term, margins across the company as a whole will improve. And while Yahoo may be consolidating its products around a much smaller group of core properties, Thompson was keen to point out that this won’t rule out launching new services in the future. The immediate focus, however, will be on improving ‘core experiences’.

“I’m convinced we don’t need to reinvent who we are,” he added. Perhaps not, but for now, it seems that too much of the market still doesn’t really know who Yahoo is, beyond its funky purple branding.

Report a problem with article
Previous Story

Encyclopaedia Britannica moves to app subscription model

Next Story

Microsoft dev retracts Windows Phone 8 update claims

10 Comments

Commenting is disabled on this article.

My Bro-In Law uses YIM. I also like Flickr and the weather app was always a must for me on XP.
I do agree Tim Dawg about looking dated. They have refreshed the home page with a slightly modern design which is better than nothing and way better than the old look. I do like the content and every day I check my mail there so I am always around.

There are sexier sites granted and for me the mail must be improved more. Sometimes it lags, stutters even on fast connection that I am on. If they can make it function like Gmail or Hotmail and have it faster and smooth I will be very happy.

Yahoo feels dated to me, like the AOL of yesteryear. Content is decent but the layout, look and feel, and general overall operation feels so very antiquated. It's a turn off when you have so many "sexier" sites out there. At least that's the way I feel about it.

Tim Dawg said,
Yahoo feels dated to me, like the AOL of yesteryear. Content is decent but the layout, look and feel, and general overall operation feels so very antiquated. It's a turn off when you have so many "sexier" sites out there. At least that's the way I feel about it.
Omg I can't disagree more. Their layout for Mail especially is awesome. I hope that they continue to unify it in that way because it would be the sexiest design for me.

I have had a Yahoo Email account for over 14 years. I love the mail but they need to improve that and many more. I am glad to see this change.

Yahoo Sports and Finance though are top notch. Sometimes Yahoo Sports breaks big news, they always seem on top of things.

flynempire said,
I have had a Yahoo Email account for over 14 years. I love the mail but they need to improve that and many more. I am glad to see this change.

Yahoo Sports and Finance though are top notch. Sometimes Yahoo Sports breaks big news, they always seem on top of things.


Yahoo Finance is also my first stop for finance and maybe XE when it's on currency conversion.

I think Yahoo has been stuck into offering everything in one hand for too long.
That is kind of the cataloging the web instead of making it searchable way of thinking.
Nowadays, you don't win with an all-in-one solution, if you're not great at it.
Only having a couple very good services doesn't suffice to make the others look relevant.

I use YIM, Finance, Weather and Flickr, all of which I deem pretty solid and generally great.

GS:mac

Corporate bullsh* translator: ON

Output: We've been doing a lot of useless dotcomboom things in a really half-assed manner and then we've been outgunned. So we'll cut jobs, close down divisions, slap some more ads in the Mail and hope that that will pull us through another year, because I still want a new yacht.

Phouchg said,
Corporate bullsh* translator: ON

Output: We've been doing a lot of useless dotcomboom things in a really half-assed manner and then we've been outgunned. So we'll cut jobs, close down divisions, slap some more ads in the Mail and hope that that will pull us through another year, because I still want a new yacht.


It's less of a boom thingy, more of the way Yahoo's strategy always has been like:
everything in one hand.
You get Mail, Finance, News, Weather, blaaaa blaaaaa.... from one company...
It's a sweet concept, but unless you really beef up your products to the max somehow possible, you're not gonna be a killing competitor overall, just in parts of your business.
(e.g. they are still strong in email, messaging and photos)

GS:mac

Phouchg said,
Corporate bullsh* translator: ON

Output: We've been doing a lot of useless dotcomboom things in a really half-assed manner and then we've been outgunned. So we'll cut jobs, close down divisions, slap some more ads in the Mail and hope that that will pull us through another year, because I still want a new yacht.

Nailed it!

Yahoo has purple branding?
I mostly know them from YUI... those sites are more blue-ish

ontopic.. i hope they dont kill off YUI