Mayer fires notoriously hard-to-work-with COO De Castro

Faith Merino · January 16, 2014 · Short URL:

Mayer's first hire is out--with $60 million

Little more than a year on the job, Yahoo COO Henrique De Castro is outie. The reportedly hard-to-work-with De Castro was apparently getting on everyone’s last nerve in addition to not doing much to turn Yahoo’s ad business around. So on Wednesday evening, CEO Marissa Mayer sent out a memo to employees to inform them of De Castro’s departure and some other executive reorganization changes.

Interestingly, Mayer’s memo doesn’t gloss over the bitter truth. There’s no “the Yahoo board has accepted Henrique’s resignation.” It’s full on “I FIRED HENRIQUE DE CASTRO.”

Writes Mayer: “During my own reflection, I made the difficult decision that our COO, Henrique de Castro, should leave the company. I appreciate Henrique’s contributions and wish him the best in his future endeavors.”

Gotta give a girl props for honesty.

Of course, Mayer was the one who hired De Castro in the first place—despite numerous, NUMEROUS misgivings from others. Anonymous ex-Googlers were particularly troubled by the hire, some saying De Castro isn’t qualified for the position, others saying he has no experience with ad salesforce, and most saying he’s a douche.

Nevertheless, the former VP of Google’s global Partner Business Solutions was Mayer’s first hire upon being appointed the new Yahoo CEO because he was believed to be responsible for building brand advertising on YouTube and driving Google’s display advertising business to billions in revenue. Ex-Googlers, however, have pointed out that Google bought DoubleClick at the same time and already had a pretty solid product and engineering team.

De Castro came at a pretty steep price. To lure him away from Google, Yahoo offered him $64 million over the course of four years. De Castro only made it 15 months. BUT DON’T WORRY, YOU GUYS. He’s not leaving Yahoo empty-handed. He will leave with nearly $60 million. $60 MILLION. That consists of $39.2 million for the full year of 2012, plus an extra $20 million stock bonus.


But, you know, if you’re a single parent and you lost your job at Walmart due to cutbacks, your employment benefits are up and Congress gives exactly zero f*cks. But a corporate executive who proves his incompetence and is fired for it—THAT GUY WALKS AWAY WITH $60 MILLION.

 That’s it. I hereby declare class warfare. NO MAS!

But. I. Digress.

Mayer announced a bit of restructuring in the wake of Henrique De Castro’s $60 million departure. Henceforth, Yahoo CMO Kathy Savitt will lead Yahoo’s media and editorial functions while several others formerly under De Castro will now report to Mike Kern’s Homepages and Verticals group. Dawn Airey, John Devine, Ned Brody, and Rose Tsou will report directly to Mayer henceforth. 


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