Yahoo Blows Up Communications Department in Revamp

Those Affected by Layoffs Informed in Meetings Throughout the Day

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With 2,000 layoffs to make, it's a big week for human resources and security at Yahoo. As the dust settles, we're getting a clearer picture of who's leaving and who's staying.

One department getting a huge makeover is communications, with CEO Scott Thompson cutting about half of the staff. Among those leaving is its chief, Eric Brown, and a key deputy, Nina Blackwell.

Mr. Brown notified his people in a meeting yesterday afternoon. It is not clear whether his departure is part of the layoffs or if he was forced out, as AllThingsD suggested in a report Thursday morning that said Mr. Thompson was hiring PayPal exec Amanda Pires to lead Yahoo's communications.

Mr. Brown did not return an email requesting comment. Ms. Blackwell did not return a voicemail left on her cellphone. A Yahoo spokesperson gave only the following statement: "The communications and marketing team was impacted, as was every part of the organization. We had some changes, but we're not going to comment on or confirm any specific departures."

Most departments have been affected by the restructuring. Employees affected were informed in meetings throughout the day yesterday.

The ad-technology side is also going through changes. Hardeep Bindra, who managed partnership relations for Yahoo's ad exchange, Right Media, is leaving. He resigned and was not part of today's layoffs.

Also gone is Joel Jones, former CEO Carol Bartz's chief of staff, who managed a division that included the ad exchange and ad-network businesses. Mr. Jones is headed to Facebook, a source told Ad Age . Mr. Jones could not be reached for comment.

His exit could signal a consolidation of power under sales exec Peter Foster, who took on more of a leadership role when former sales exec Seth Dallaire exited for Amazon in January.

Mr. Foster is now running the part of the business that focuses on audience advertising. Before Yahoo, he was chief revenue officer at 5:1, an ad platform that Yahoo acquired last year. The CEO of 5:1, Jim Heckman, is now one of Yahoo's top strategy execs and the right-hand man to Exec VP-Americas Ross Levinsohn. Mr. Heckman and Mr. Levinsohn are still with the company.

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