J’Accuse! Marissa Mayer Was Late to the Table, Leaving Ad Execs Miffed at Cannes

She slept in, report says

Marissa Mayer is being accused of a major faux pas—sleeping through a big dinner meeting with advertisers at Cannes. The Yahoo CEO was two hours late to the table last week and blamed a lengthy nap, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Mayer had been trying to woo the industry, which is what the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity is all about. The fact that her late appearance has leaked to the media shows that she has more work to do to impress Madison Avenue.

In the past, Mayer’s interest in advertising has been questioned, and since she became CEO of Yahoo two years ago, she has prioritized products and acquisitions over ad sales, the core of the business.

The Journal quoted an industry executive who said Mayer would never have left investors or board members hanging. The Yahoo CEO had a private dinner lined up last Tuesday at L’Oasis with Interpublic Group and high-profile clients Mondelez International, MillerCoors and Chobani.

By the time she arrived two hours late, telling guests she overslept, IPG CEO Michael Roth had already left, according to the report. Yahoo would not comment on the story, but a rep for the company did say: "We value our partnership with IPG and all of our advertisers."

Mayer is under immense pressure to revive Yahoo’s ad fortunes and was in Cannes showing off the company’s latest offering, which included newly launched online properties and a strategy to incorporate native ads. The company also has revealed new Tumblr ads that appear on Yahoo sites.

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