Marissa Mayer, Yahoo's new CEO

Web search firm Yahoo has appointed former Google executive Marissa Mayer as its new CEO. Mayer joined Google in 1999 as the firm’s 20th employee. Her most recent role was to oversee the web giant’s Local, Maps, and Location Services; a suite of products that includes Google Maps, Google Earth, Street View, and local search, for desktop and mobile.

Yahoo said that Mayer’s appointment “signals a renewed focus on product innovation to drive user experience and advertising revenue”.

The Yahoo board sacked former CEO Carol Bartz, in September last year, and CFO Timothy Morse took on the responsibility of interim CEO role while the firm searched for a permanent successor. That role was temporarily filled by ex-Paypal president Scott Thompson, who resigned after just four months at the helm, amid controversy surrounding his CV. 

Mayer, who was Google’s first ever female engineer, is currently pregnant, with her baby due in October, but told Fortune magazine: “My maternity leave will be a few weeks long and I’ll work throughout it.”

During her 13 years at Google, Mayer held numerous positions, including engineer, designer, product manager for Google search for a period in which the firm grew from a few hundred thousand to well over a billion searches per day.

Mayer also led the development of Google’s image, book and product search, toolbar, and iGoogle and is listed as an inventor on several patents in artificial intelligence and interface design.

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