Yahoo Lays Off 2,000

Scott Thompson sent employees an email early Wednesday morning.

By Jason Middleton
|  Wednesday, Apr 4, 2012  |  Updated 11:15 PM PDT
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Yahoo's sign seen Wednesday morning, shortly after new CEO Scott Thompson announced the layoffs for 2,000 Yahoo employees.

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Yahoo CEO Scott Thompson pledged in a March 14 email to "lean forward" into changing the company's direction. Wednesday morning he sent another email, announcing the layoff of 2,000 employees.

Yahoo began its official release with this: "Today's actions are an important next step toward a bold, new Yahoo! -- smaller, nimbler, more profitable and better equipped to innovate as fast as our customers and our industry require."

It goes on to boast of nearly 700 million users and thousands of advertisers.Layoffs had been rumored since Thompson took over about four months ago.

[Yahoo's official statement is here.]

In that March 14 email, Thompson emailed employees about "real change" that's coming -- an attempt to "soothe the company" during executive departures and proxy fights, as Kara Swisher wrote.

Thompson has made clear during his brief tenure that he intends to find "what makes Yahoo special and what doesn't work."

For context of the company's valuation Yahoo is worth $15 billion, Google's $208 billion and Apple is $568 billion.

Yahoo has also filed a patent infrigement lawsuit against Facebook, stirring the patent wars and drawing more than a little public-relations ire.

As Silicon Valley expert (and frequent panelist on Press Here) Sarah Lacy points out, Yahoo is being consulted heavily by Boston Consulting Group -- perhaps not the most plugged-in to the Silicon Valley "innovation" model mentioned in its official statement (above).

Facebook has countersued Yahoo, taking the reins of public opinion. In Lacy's able words:

Facebook has suddenly found itself cast in the delicious role of defender of the vaunted Silicon Valley way and the very name of innovation.

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