Yahoo Layoffs Affect Communications Department | Digital – Advertising Age

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 at the company.

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

Mr. Brown notified his staff in a meeting yesterday afternoon. It is not clear whether Mr. Brown’s 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 bringing in PayPal communications exec Amanda Pires to Yahoo to lead communications.

Mr. Brown did not return an email requesting comment. Ms. Blackwell did not return a voicemail left on her cell phone. Yahoo declined to comment, other than giving 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,” the spokesperson said.

Most departments in the company have been affected by yesterday’s restructuring, which Yahoo said would result in the elimination of 2,000 jobs. Employees affected were informed in meetings throughout the day yesterday.

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

Gone, too, is Joel Jones, Carol Bartz’s former 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.

Mr. Jones’ exit could signal a consolidation of power under sales exec Peter Foster, who took on more of a leadership role after former sales exec Seth Dallaire departed 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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