Archive for Yahoo

Yahoo Takeover By Verizon Closes… Mayer Resigns With Millions In Her Purse

Posted in Commentary with tags on June 14, 2017 by itnerd

It’s official. Yahoo has been swallowed up by Verizon, and as part of that Marissa Mayer is leaving her post as CEO of what used to be called Yahoo. But is now called Oath which is now run by Tim Armstrong, former chief executive of AOL. Mayer posted a Tumblr post with her thoughts on her departure:

Looking back on my time at Yahoo, we have confronted seemingly insurmountable business challenges, along with many surprise twists and turns. I’ve seen our teams navigate these hurdles and mountains in ways that have not only made Yahoo a better company, but also made all of us far stronger. During these past 5 years, we’ve built products that delight our users, focused on our clients’ businesses, driven substantial value for our shareholders, and endeavored to make Yahoo the absolute best place to work. I want to take a moment to remind you of some of our many achievements together. They are remarkable, and we should all be very proud.

Chances are that she won’t have to look for a job for a little while. I say that because she pocketed $23 million in severance which is not exactly chump change. Nor is the fact that if you factor in her stock holdings in what used to be called Yahoo, she leaves with $236 million according to CNN. Not bad considering what a gong show Yahoo has been over the last few years with failed attempts to make itself relevant again, and getting pwned by hackers multiple times. I wish I could fail like that and get that sort of payday.

 

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#EpicFail: Mayer’s Golden Parachute From Yahoo Is $186 Million

Posted in Commentary with tags on April 25, 2017 by itnerd

So… Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer has managed to ensure that when the Verizon buyout of Yahoo is finished in June, that’s she’s going to score a ton of cash before being shown the door. How much cash? Here’s what The New York Times has to say:

Her Yahoo stock, stock options and restricted stock units are worth a total of $186 million, based on Monday’s stock price of $48.15, according to data filed on Monday in the documents sent to shareholders about the Verizon deal.

Oh… But it gets better…. Depending on your point of view of course:

That compensation, which will be fully vested at the time of the shareholder vote, does not include her salary and bonuses over the past five years, or the value of other stock that Ms. Mayer has already sold. All told, her time at Yahoo will have netted her well over $200 million, according to calculations based on company filings.

All together now… Whiskey Tango Foxtrot? This is a woman who has presided over one of the biggest epic fails in American corporate history. And that was before Yahoo got hacked multiple times. How she manages to walk away with this much money is mind boggling. And it beats the millions that Mark Hurd was given to quit his job as CEO of HP after allegations of either sexual harassment or an “inappropriate relationship” with an HP employee that was tied to inaccurate expense reporting that likely covered up the former surfaced.

If I had Yahoo stock, I’d be royally pissed right about now.

Feds Identify Four Perps In Connection With Yahoo Hacks

Posted in Commentary with tags on March 15, 2017 by itnerd

According to a report by Bloomberg, four people have been identified in connection with the hacks of Yahoo. Three are Russian. One, in a moment of national shame for me, is apparently Canadian and he or she is under arrest:

U.S. officials are planning to unseal charges against four people, including two linked to the Russian intelligence service, related to the hacking attacks against Yahoo! Inc., according to a person briefed on the matter.

The Justice Department is accusing them of participating in massive online security breaches that compromised hundreds of millions of user accounts, said the person, who asked not to be identified because it was a sensitive legal matter. The hacks came to light last year and threatened to derail the sale of Yahoo’s web operations to Verizon Communications Inc.

One of the people was arrested in Canada Tuesday and was scheduled to appear in court Wednesday for an extradition hearing, according an officer with the court in Hamilton, near Toronto. Additional details weren’t immediately. Three of the suspects are believed to be in Russia, according to the person. Representatives of Sunnyvale, California-based Yahoo and the Justice Department declined to comment.

So this case has taken an interesting turn as it looks like these hacks were state sponsored. That’s going to be a concern going forward as it is now clear that whether you’re a government or a corporation, you have to consider those actors as well as the 12 year old living in their mother’s basement.

UPDATE: There are many more details on this story now coming to light which make for a very interesting read. For that, I would direct you to this story. Also of note, Marissa Mayer who is the CEO of Yahoo who was clearly asleep at the switch when these hacks occurred had this to say on Twitter:

Yahoo CEO Scores A $23 Million Severance Payday Despite Multiple Yahoo Hacks

Posted in Commentary with tags on March 13, 2017 by itnerd

I clearly am in the wrong business because upon Verizon’s completion of its acquisition of Yahoo’s core internet assets, Marissa Mayer who is Yahoo’s CEO will score a $23 million dollar payday  according to a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission. If that’s not mind blowing enough, the same documents indicates that Yahoo Chief Financial Officer Ken Goldman is set to get $9.5 million in severance too. Both are expected to leave their roles once the deal goes through.

You have to wonder how someone like Mayer who among other things has allowed Yahoo to get hacked multiple times by hackers on her watch deserves that sort of payday. Not to mention that she also failed miserably to make Yahoo relevant again which led to this sale. Last time I checked, you shouldn’t be rewarded for failure. But clearly, the business world doesn’t work that way.

Mayer Gives Up Bonus Due To Hacks

Posted in Commentary with tags on March 1, 2017 by itnerd

 

You might recall Yahoo revealed that they were hacked in December which was the latest in a string of attacks. That has a cost and today it was revealed that Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer is giving yahoo employees her annual bonus to make up for the massive hacks:

As those who follow Yahoo know, in late 2014, we were the victim of a state-sponsored attack and reported it to law enforcement as well as to the 26 users that we understood were impacted. When I learned in September 2016 that a large number of our user database files had been stolen, I worked with the team to disclose the incident to users, regulators, and government agencies. However, I am the CEO of the company and since this incident happened during my tenure, I have agreed to forgo my annual bonus and my annual equity grant this year and have expressed my desire that my bonus be redistributed to our company’s hardworking employees, who contributed so much to Yahoo’s success in 2016.

Great optics. But it’s really meaningless as she’s failed so spectacularly in her role as CEO. I seriously doubt that this was her idea. Hopefully whomever is going to be responsible for this mess at Verizon does a better job than her.

Verizon/Yahoo Deal To Take $350 Million Haircut

Posted in Commentary with tags on February 21, 2017 by itnerd

The news is out this morning that Verizon’s purchase of horribly insecure Yahoo is going ahead. But with a $350 million discount due to the latter’s inability to not get pwned by hackers:

Under the amended deal, Yahoo will be responsible for 50 per cent of any cash liabilities incurred following the closing related to government investigations and lawsuits related to the breaches. Liabilities arising from shareholder lawsuits and SEC investigations will continue to be the responsibility of Yahoo.

“The amended terms of the agreement provide a fair and favourable outcome for shareholders,” said Marni Walden, Verizon executive vice-president and president of product innovation and new businesses. “It provides protections for both sides and delivers a clear path to close the transaction in the second quarter.”

The security breaches raised concerns that people might decrease their usage of Yahoo e-mail and other digital services that Verizon is buying. A smaller audience makes Yahoo’s services less valuable because it reduces the opportunities to show ads – the main reason that Verizon struck the deal seven months ago.

You have to wonder why Verizon would even bother with this seeing as these breaches, one of which was as recent as last week, keep happening. There must really be something that Yahoo has that Verizon really wants as I would have pulled the plug on this mess ages ago. But Verizon doesn’t see things that way. And that’s why we’re here. It will be interesting to see if anything else happens that encourages Verizon to finally walk away from the deal.

 

 

Yahoo Pwned By Hackers AGAIN

Posted in Commentary with tags on February 17, 2017 by itnerd

It is clear that Yahoo can’t keep its infrastructure secure as the company has had to admit that they’ve been hacked once again. The Hacker News has details on the hack which apparently doesn’t require require your password for hackers to pwn you. What’s even worse, the report says that “state sponsored attackers” are behind this. Affected users are being notified by Yahoo and there is no clear indication of how many users have been pwned.

Thus it’s no shock that Verizon who still wants to buy Yahoo despite all of this, wants a $250 million haircut to close the deal.  Personally if I were Verizon, I’d scrap the deal entirely. There’s nothing of value here given that Yahoo is a complete disaster from everything that I see here.

In the meantime, I will be visiting a client who apparently can’t get into her Yahoo e-mail in the last few days. I am hoping that this is not related to this hack. But anything is possible. Update to come.

UPDATE: The customer was one of the people affected by this. She had Yahoo force a password change which locked her account until she made the change. I helped her do that on her computer and iPad and now she’s back in business.