Yang Exit May Mean Asset Sales

After co-founder's departure, Yahoo may pursue buyers for its stakes in Alibaba and Yahoo Japan.

Jerry Yang’s exit from Yahoo! Inc. removes one of the last vestiges of a management team chided by investors for failing to find a buyer or negotiate a sale of stakes in Asian assets worth more than $10 billion.

Now that co-founder and one-time chief executive officer Yang has cut his leadership ties to Yahoo, newly appointed CEO Scott Thompson has freer rein to unwind the company’s part-ownership of Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. and Yahoo Japan Corp. He may also do a better job mounting a credible threat to Google Inc. and Facebook Inc. in online advertising, said Clayton Moran, an analyst at Benchmark Co.

Four other directors will also depart from Yahoo’s board, the technology blog AllThingsDigital reported yesterday, citing people close to the situation.

Yahoo shares fell less than 1 percent to $15.43 at the close in New York yesterday. They jumped as high as $16.48 after the announcement. In German trading today, the stock gained 2.7 percent to the equivalent of $15.97 at 8:49 a.m. in Frankfurt.

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