Yahoo CEO Carol Bartz Fired, Stocks Rise

Failing to turn around Yahoo’s financial woes for the last 2 1/2 years the board fired CEO Carol Bartz on Tuesday and its company stocks rose 5 percent on Wednesday.

In January 2009, Yahoo had a stock market capitalization of $22.24 billion. That’s when and Carol Bartz replaced cofounder Jerry Yang as company CEO. Now, the web company might be open to selling itself to the right bidder, according to a person familiar with the matter.

Yahoo’s board named Tim Morse, its chief financial officer, as interim CEO. Bartz lured Morse away from computer-chip maker Altera Corp. two years ago to help her cuts costs. The company said it is looking for a permanent replacement.

The board has replaced three CEOs in a little over four years. During that time, Yahoo has been losing ground in the Internet ad race to online search leader Google and Facebook even though its website remains among the world’s most popular. The company is now at an infection point and will either be purchased, fade, or it will evolve into something new.

Yahoo is No. 2 in ComScore’s top 50 ranking with 177.6 million unique users in July. Google has 182.3 million uniques. Microsoft Bing, Facebook, and AOL round out the top 5. That audience means something. The company can aggregate eyeballs in one place better than anyone.

Yahoo is basically a Web broadcast network as many Internet users have chosen it for finance, e-mail, news, or fantasy sports.

At one point, Bartz compared her challenge to those that faced Steve Jobs when he returned to Apple Inc. as CEO in 1997. Unlike Jobs, she never could articulate a strategy to win over investors. “She focused on plugging holes in the ship instead of turning it around,” said Gartner Inc. analyst Ray Valdes.