Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Marissa Mayer is Fast-Talking Everyone

Marissa Mayer
According to The Post, Yahoo's Marissa Mayer has behaved like a control freak at meetings with prospective bidders for the company, frequently talking over her fellow execs and answering questions on their behalf.

The 40-year-old chief executive's relentless chatter may signal she’s desperate to stay at the helm of the aging tech giant — but some insiders say it could end up blowing up in her face.

"Her fatal flaw is that she’s not a listener," according to one source close to the auction. "It’s showing where her leadership skills are challenged."

Second-round bids due early next month could approach US $4 billion, with an equity check of as much as US$ 1 billion backed by up to US$ 3 billion in debt financing, sources said.

Still, those numbers could fall as bidders weigh potential cost cuts against Yahoo’s sagging sales and hefty bills for employee stock compensation.

The auction has attracted potential buyers including Verizon and Quicken Loans founder Dan Gilbert along with buyout firms TPG, Bain Capital, Apax Partners and Sycamore Partners, sources said.

As Mayer fields questions on nearly every part of the company, from mobile search to video ads, most admit she’s sharp and knowledgeable.

"She is a CEO, so it's expected for her to speak intimately and passionately about the business," said one source who has worked closely with Mayer in the past.

But in a string of meetings with bidders that ended earlier this week, others grumbled that Mayer appeared consumed with looking smart, indispensable — and right about everything.

Another source close to the auction put it bluntly: "I think she genuinely believes she kicks ass."

Some critics say Mayer's management style has stifled the strong execs who still remain at the company. Those include Enrique Munoz Torres, senior vice president of search and advertising, and Jeff Bonforte, SVP of communication products.

"There might be an opportunity to let a management team that seems very seasoned and smart to actually execute without her getting in the way and being a bottleneck for decision-making," one insider said.

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