Kara Swisher

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Here's the Detailed Details of the New Yahoo Reorg

Company in crisis? Employees morale plummeting? Shareholders in revolt? Stock slumping? Barbarians at the gate?

The perfect time to get out the Rubik’s Cube for yet another Yahoo reorganization!

BoomTown now has the outline of the likely sweeping management changes at Yahoo (YHOO), which we reported on earlier this week here and also here, to be announced next week by the troubled Internet company.

The reorg, which will drastically change the structure of management, explains a lot about the spate of recent departures by top execs at the company.

Let’s just dive in, shall we?

First off, a spanking new Global Products group, which will be headed by Ash Patel (pictured here), who is currently EVP of Yahoo’s Platforms and Infrastructure division.

Much of the Network division, which until recently was under the leadership of the now departed Jeff Weiner, will move under Patel, including search, mail, instant messenger, front page, platforms and social networking.

All these products are considered “global” properties and products and will be managed out of Yahoo HQ in Sunnyvale, Calif.

That means the fiefdoms of communications and communities SVP Brad Garlinghouse, Search SVP Vish Makhijani and Front Door head Tapan Bhat will move into Global Products.

Which would explain why Makhijani is now headed out the door and Garlinghouse is on the fence about his own departure.

Bhat is also reportedly unsure about the new structure and is considering his options.

Unlike Qi Lu, Yahoo’s EVP of Search and Advertising Technology, who is also leaving and is considered a tech rock star at Yahoo, the prospect of working for Patel is not a welcome one for some Yahoo execs in the old Network division.

Patel has been at Yahoo since 1996, which makes him one of the oldest of old guards at the company.

“No one wants to report up through him,” said one Yahoo exec. “He’s a Yahoo lifer and not the kind of dynamic leader we need.”

More welcome–although not by all–is likely to be the move to give Global Partner Solutions EVP Hilary Schneider (pictured here) purview over the entire U.S. region.

She will be Patel’s peer in the new organization and both will report directly to Yahoo President Sue Decker.

Schneider’s arena will include all of ad sales and also the Yahoo Media Group under Scott Moore, who was Weiner’s other direct report.

That shift will bring together Yahoo’s vast content properties, like Yahoo Finance, with ad sales and align them more closely.

In addition, some other consumer-facing products will move to Moore under Schneider.

In the last reorganization, Moore got autos and real estate, as well as all entertainment and sports.

Several sources said Moore, a former Microsoft (MSFT) exec, is satisfied about the new arrangement and the prospect of reporting to Schneider.

But other sources said he also has been scouting out a new start-up venture that could include some significant investors.

In addition, some execs are worried about the likable Schneider’s ability to handle such a large job.

“There is lot on her plate and, while she is good at the business side, she is not a products person,” said one in a common refrain about her.

The rest of the world will be split up between three other regions: Europe, headed by Toby Coppel; Asia, run by Rose Tsou; and emerging markets, headed by Keith Nilsson.

Yahoo’s relatively new CTO Ari Balogh will take over a lot of Lu’s team with various engineering execs under him.

Top managers, most of whom had little input in the reorg, which was run by Decker (pictured here) and top HR execs, are reeling from the changes being presented with what most say is little consultation.

“I am not sure right now, with all this drama and all this tension from Microsoft’s failed takeover and the rest of it, why we have to do this,” said another exec. “This feels crazy.”

Maybe not so much. Yahoo shareholders are becoming restless after Microsoft dropped its $33 a share bid for Yahoo and want some action soon.

And billionaire activist investor Carl Icahn is still pursuing his proxy fight to remove Yahoo’s board and management.

Insiders within Yahoo suspect that top execs want to make changes before the Aug. 1 annual meeting, so they can show momentum.

The question is whether that will include another more significant change–the stepping up to Chairman for Yahoo CEO Jerry Yang and the handing over the CEO reins to Decker.

Many execs said that Yang has been strangely absent from the communications around the reorg, which has been driven largely by Decker.

“Where’s Jerry here? He is like a ghost,” said another exec. “It is nerve-wracking.”


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