Kara Swisher

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Yet Another Yahoo Reorg (But Wait, This One Looks Good)

This weekend, as first reported by the most excellent Staci Kramer at paidContent, Yahoo did yet another Yet Another Hierarchical Officious (re-)Organization (YAHOO!).

Memo to CEO Jerry Yang, who is apparently still so annoyed with BoomTown’s spiky posts on Yahoo’s troubles–we have sources too, you know–that lunch together seems a distant dream: We like it!

Of course, it’s true that Yahoo has become well known of late for its cloddish reorgs, but this one is a sensible one and even bold.

moore

This time, its Network division gets the redo, with the big move in its media area, marked by the ascension of Scott Moore (pictured here) taking over virtually all content at the Internet giant.

Along with his news and information (news, sports, financial), Moore now gets all of entertainment (television, movies, games), video, lifestyle (youth, women), real estate and autos.

And contrary to rumors, the Yahoo office in Santa Monica, Calif., where a lot of the media action is, will remain intact.

“I see huge opportunities for Yahoo as an online media leader,” said Moore, who came to Yahoo from Microsoft three years ago. “We have enormous audiences across every category on the Web, and this change sets us up to continue the dramatic progress we have made in the last year.”

But there’s more, including adding to the portfolios of other Network chieftains, in an attempt to streamline the top-heavy organization and make fewer people accountable for more.

“Our goal is to better align management around assets,” said Network head Jeff Weiner in an interview last night, who noted his reports drop to four from six. “We think this is much better coordinated and we want to think about the network more holistically.”

Vish Makhijani, SVP of Yahoo Search, for example, will add local, travel, shopping and personals to his portfolio.

Tapan Bhat’s area will now be called Front Doors and Network Services, to include things like toolbars and alerts.

And Brad Garlinghouse, who heads Yahoo’s communications and communities arenas, will add taking the lead on integrating “social capabilities” across the network.

This all comes from the Local Markets and Commerce properties that were moved from the Global Partnership Solution group headed by EVP Hilary Schneider to Weiner’s Network division. Jennifer Dulski, who headed shopping, travel, autos, real estate and local, left Yahoo last month.

Moore essentially now has the job that one-time media head Lloyd Braun had. (The high-profile Hollywood player left Yahoo under a very dark cloud last year and is now working on his own online entertainment efforts.)

Braun actually recruited Moore into Yahoo, along with Vince Broady, whose portfolio goes to Moore in this reorg. Broady is still a Yahoo employee, said Weiner. “We’re figuring out the appropriate position for him,” he said.

Weiner noted that all of these changes were related to one of the main strategies outlined by Yang for Yahoo’s future, which called for it to be the “starting point” for consumers on the Web.

“We want to provide a better consumer experience and be more relevant,” said Weiner. “We are focusing on all ways to tie together our network and eliminate silos.”

He said he means everything from a lot more third-party publisher relationships to better tools to attempting to increase frequency and engagement.

Those efforts will also require the Network division, especially Moore’s, which relies almost completely on ad revenues, to work more closely with Schneider’s division.

“Our intention is to lead in every category we compete in,” said Moore. “And that will make us even more attractive to all kinds of advertisers.”


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I’m a giant vat of creative juices.

— David Pogue on why he’s joining Yahoo