Yahoo! Taps Autodesk CEO Carol Bartz to Replace Yang

Yahoo! officially entered a new era Tuesday when it announced the selection of former Autodesk CEO and current Executive Chairman Carol Bartz to take over from founder-turned-CEO Jerry Yang, who resigned late in 2008. Ms. Bartz will take over Yahoo! at a time when the Internet search giant is considered to be struggling, and will serve as both CEO and a member of the company's Board of Directors.

"We are very excited to have Carol Bartz leading Yahoo! into its next era of growth," Roy Bostock, Chairman of the Board, said in a statement. "She is the exact combination of seasoned technology executive and savvy leader that the Board was looking for, and we are thrilled to have attracted such a world-class talent to Yahoo!."

Ms. Bartz, age 60, is a seasoned technology executive with stints at Autodesk (where she oversaw the company's growth from a US$300 million a year in sales to $1.5 billion in yearly sales), Sun Microsystems, Digital Equipment Corporation and 3M. She currently serves on the boards of Intel, Cisco, and NetApp.

Autodesk is the maker of CAD power house AutoCAD, a product that abandoned the Mac platform many years ago. Autodesk also bought Alias, which makes 3D animation solution Maya, a product that does support the Mac platform.

Mr. Bostock also thanked Jerry Yang for stepping into the role of CEO 18 months ago, and omitted any mention of the fact that Yahoo! is currently worth about a third of its value when, under Mr. Yang's leadership, the company rejected a takeover bid from Microsoft, who wanted the company's search engine. Mr. Yang will now return to his role as "Chief Yahoo" for the company.

Yahoo! also announced that President Sue Decker will resign after a transitional period in which she will assist Ms. Bartz into her new role.