Yahoo this afternoon announced that co-founder and former CEO Jerry Yang has resigned from the company, including from his position on its board of directors.
The move is effective today.
In a letter to board chairman Roy Bostock, Yang wrote:
My time at Yahoo!, from its founding to the present, has encompassed some of the most exciting and rewarding experiences of my life. However, the time has come for me to pursue other interests outside of Yahoo! As I leave the company I co-founded nearly 17 years ago, I am enthusiastic about the appointment of Scott Thompson as Chief Executive Officer and his ability, along with the entire Yahoo! leadership team, to guide Yahoo! into an exciting and successful future.
Bostock responded with the following statement:
Jerry Yang is a visionary and a pioneer, who has contributed enormously to Yahoo! during his many years of service. It has been a pleasure to work with Jerry. His unique strategic insights have been invaluable. He has always remained focused on the best interests of Yahoo!'s stakeholders, including shareholders, employees and more than 700 million users. And while I and the entire Board respect his decision, we will miss his remarkable perspective, vision and wise counsel. On behalf of the Board, we thank Jerry and wish him all the very best in his future endeavors.
In many ways, the news is unsurprising. The company hinted at board turnover earlier this month; after new chief executive Scott Thompson entered the picture after the new year, it was only natural that changes would be made. The question is whether these changes rock the boat further or steady it.
Yang co-founded Yahoo with David Filo in 1995; the company went public in 1996. He was also chief executive officer of the company between June 2007 and January 2009.