Track the companies that matter to you. It's FREE! Click one of these fan favorites to get started: Apple; Google; Ford.



Yahoo!'s Yang Hangs Up His Purple Cape

Don't let it get away!

Keep track of the stocks that matter to you.

Help yourself with the Fool's FREE and easy new watchlist service today.

Where have you gone, Jerry Yang?

Yahoo!'s (Nasdaq: YHOO  ) co-founder, onetime CEO, and public face has announced his resignation.

"The time has come for me to pursue other interests outside of Yahoo!," Yang is quoted as saying in yesterday's press release.

Why should Yang leave now? He stuck around as the dot-com bubble burst, an attempt to go Hollywood with Terry Semel fizzled out, investors soured after rejecting Microsoft's (Nasdaq: MSFT  ) juicy buyout offer, and Carol Bartz's ill-advised decision to outsource its search through Bing played out. What's so bad after 17 years of ups and downs at the dot-com giant to find Yang willing to cut ties with his company in 2012?

Investors are suspicious about his timing. Speculators are encouraged.

The stock traded higher on the news. Yang shouldn't take that personally. The market isn't applauding because he's leaving. Speculators are simply piling on, assuming that Yahoo! is about to unload its Asian assets or sell the company whole.

Resigning is the proud thing to do when the company you started is about to get gutted.

Some would argue that staying would be the financially prudent thing to do. If Yahoo! is on the verge of being acquired, surely the buyer would either be able to reward Yang nicely for sticking around or feed him a chunky severance in cutting him loose.

However, what if Yahoo! is actually selling just some of its parts? What if he doesn't like the assets that will remain after the carving knives clear out?

Either way, it's not as if Yang needs to make this a financial decision. He has money.

The meaty question is, where will he land next? What "other interests outside of Yahoo!" will he pursue?

Despite Yahoo!'s meandering state in recent years, Yang would look good at other dot-com heavies. Google (Nasdaq: GOOG  ) is hiring in China again. Baidu (Nasdaq: BIDU  ) has its heart set on growth outside of China.

Yang is also resigning from the boards of Yahoo! Japan and Alibaba, so clearly he's a free agent in every sense. Yahoo!'s success in Asia came as a sharp contrast to its shortcomings closer to home. In other words, Yang would be a hot name overseas.

Obviously he can also strike out on his own, but it would be easier to land as an executive at a dot-com darling in Google or Baidu than risk being let down by his entrepreneurial chops.

These will be an interesting next few weeks at Yahoo!.

If you want to follow this saga closely, add Yahoo! to My Watchlist.

The Motley Fool owns shares of Google, Microsoft, and Yahoo!. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended buying shares of Google, Baidu, Yahoo!, and Microsoft. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended creating a bull call spread position in Microsoft. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz calls them as he sees them. He does not own shares in any of the stocks in this story. Rick is also part of the Rule Breakers newsletter research team, seeking out tomorrow's ultimate growth stocks a day early.

Read/Post Comments (0) | Recommend This Article (4)

Comments from our Foolish Readers

Help us keep this a respectfully Foolish area! This is a place for our readers to discuss, debate, and learn more about the Foolish investing topic you read about above. Help us keep it clean and safe. If you believe a comment is abusive or otherwise violates our Fool's Rules, please report it via the Report this Comment Report this Comment icon found on every comment.

Be the first one to comment on this article.

Compare Brokers

Fool Disclosure

Sponsored Links

Leaked: Apple's Next Smart Device
(Warning, it may shock you)
The secret is out... experts are predicting 458 million of these types of devices will be sold per year. 1 hyper-growth company stands to rake in maximum profit - and it's NOT Apple. Show me Apple's new smart gizmo!

DocumentId: 1759692, ~/Articles/ArticleHandler.aspx, 10/21/2016 7:30:25 AM

Report This Comment

Use this area to report a comment that you believe is in violation of the community guidelines. Our team will review the entry and take any appropriate action.

Sending report...

Today's Market

updated 10 hours ago Sponsored by:
DOW 18,162.35 -40.27 -0.22%
S&P 500 2,141.34 -2.95 -0.14%
NASD 5,241.83 -4.58 -0.09%

Create My Watchlist

Go to My Watchlist

You don't seem to be following any stocks yet!

Better investing starts with a watchlist. Now you can create a personalized watchlist and get immediate access to the personalized information you need to make successful investing decisions.

Data delayed up to 5 minutes

Related Tickers

10/20/2016 4:00 PM
YHOO $42.38 Down -0.35 -0.82%
Yahoo CAPS Rating: **
BIDU $175.17 Down -1.03 -0.58%
Baidu CAPS Rating: *****
GOOGL $821.63 Down -5.46 -0.66%
Alphabet (A shares… CAPS Rating: *****
MSFT $57.25 Down -0.28 -0.49%
Microsoft CAPS Rating: ****