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Yahoo CEO Thompson resigns

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Sunnyvale, Calif.—Yahoo Inc. CEO Scott Thompson resigned Sunday amid controversy over his credentials. Thompson, the former president of EBay's PayPal unit, has been Yahoo's CEO since January. He succeeded Carol Bartz, who was fired in September. Yahoo named Ross Levinsohn, the company's head of global media, as interim CEO and overhauled its board. Fred Amoroso, a current director, took over the chairmanship from Roy Bostock, who left along with four other directors. Joining the Yahoo board is Daniel Loeb, founder of hedge fund Third Point, Yahoo's largest investor, along with two other Third Point executives. Earlier this month, Loeb revealed that Thompson did not have the computer science degree his online biography indicated he had, which ignited a firestorm over Thompson's credibility. Loeb, who controls a 5.8% stake in Yahoo, had waged a proxy battle with the company to gain board seats and greater influence over the direction of the company. His disclosure of Thompson's erroneous biography was the tipping point in the battle. For its 2011 fiscal year ended Dec. 31, Yahoo had revenue of $4.98 billion, down 21.2% from the previous year, with net income of $1.06 billion, off 14.5% from 2010, as the company continued to lose market share in display ad and paid search spending. In his short tenure at Yahoo, Thompson laid off 2,000 employees, or 14% of the company's workforce, and had begun to identify business units the company would close or sell. According to The Wall Street Journal, Thompson had disclosed to the Yahoo board that he has been diagnosed with thyroid cancer. Thompson has not publicly commented on the report.
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