Ross Levinsohn Leaves Yahoo

Ross Levinsohn has left Yahoo. Earlier this month, Yahoo named former Google executive Marissa Mayer CEO, passing over Levinsohn, who had been serving as interim CEO, a move that left many wondering about Levinsohn’s future with the company. According to Ad Age, there has been wide speculation as to whether Mayer may want to surround herself with former colleagues, and also whether Levinsohn would want to stay after being passed over for the top spot.

Although Levinsohn built strong relationships with ad agencies and made content deals with media companies like CNBC, ABC News, Clear Channel, and the ad network Interclick, Yahoo’s board, with Mayer at the helm, has reportedly decided to shift its focus away from media, and onto products that tie users into the Yahoo experience.

Yesterday, Levinsohn sent the following email:

“I wanted to let you know that my time at Yahoo has come to an end. It has been an incredible journey for me and I could not be prouder of what we accomplished over the past few years helping define Yahoo as a leader in digital media and advertising. Yahoo is an amazing brand and company, and I leave knowing we did all we could to help inform and entertain more than 700 million users each month. Leading this company has been one of the best experiences of my career, but it is time for me to look for the next challenge.”

And Mayer said the following in an internal memo yesterday:

“Dear Yahoos —
I’m writing to let you know that Ross Levinsohn will be leaving the company at the end of July. Ross has been an important and powerful contributor here at Yahoo since he joined in 2010. During May and June, Ross stepped into an incredibly tough role as interim CEO and did a terrific job — he really helped keep the company moving, closed important deals, and assembled a very talented team. I’m very grateful to Ross for his leadership and work through out his tenure at Yahoo. His contributions will be missed.

Ross will be in Sunnyvale tomorrow (Tuesday, July 31st). Please take the opportunity to drop by and thank him for all that he has done for the company. I hope you can join me in wishing Ross well and letting him know how much you’ve appreciated him as a colleague.”

According to Ad Age, Levinsohn’s severance included a year’s base salary, his target annual bonus, a pro-rated portion of his 2013 bonus, about $1 million in restricted stock, and 250,000 stock options.

For the full story in Ad Age, click here: