Yahoo! names PayPal’s Thompson as CEO

Thompson takes the wheel.

Yahoo! has plucked Scott Thompson from eBay’s PayPal division, naming him as CEO on Wednesday. He replaces Carol Bartz, who was shown the door in September as Yahoo! began to explore its strategic options, including the sale of all or part of the company. Chairman Roy Bostock said following the hire that Yahoo! was already well into its strategic review and that there will not be any delays to the process due to the hiring of Thompson. His focus will be on the company’s core business, though he will be part of the strategic review process. Additionally, Bostock said that Yahoo! was not likely to be taken private, something that was heavily rumoured through the final months of 2011.

Thompson has most recently served as President of PayPal, helping it become one of eBay’s top-performing units and putting it on pace to become eBay’s largest line of business. He said he is “thrilled” to join Yahoo! and that “the core business assets are stronger here at Yahoo! than people believe at this point.”

Thompson’s appointment was a surprise to many as he was not mentioned in previous CEO discussions. Some are also concerned that he is more of a technology expert as opposed to a media expert, or someone experienced with turning around a company. That said, several analysts note that he is well respected in the internet community and has several connections, which may help Yahoo! regain its footing as an industry leader.

Yahoo! (YHOO : NASDAQ : US$15.78), Net Change: -0.51, % Change: -3.10%, Volume: 35,558,824
eBay (EBAY : NASDAQ : US$30.16), Net Change: -1.18, % Change: -3.77%, Volume: 32,831,748

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About the Author

Canaccord Genuity Inc. is a global investment banking and institutional brokerage firm. Their website is www.canaccordgenuity.com.

For disclosures of any equities mentioned here please see: http://www.canaccordgenuity.com/en/ODD/pages/disclosures.aspx.

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