Yahoo Labs Exec Ditches Digs for Google

March 05, 2012
By: Michelle Amodio

Prabhakar Raghavan was head of Yahoo Labs -- that is, until he ditched those digs to head on over to Google (News - Alert).

Word on the street is that Raghavan, whose expertise in algorithm design, will be working for the Yahoo rival, although what he will be doing hasn’t been specified. AllthingsD broke the news and hints that Yahoo might be planning cuts in that area.

“Yahoo thanks Prabhakar Raghavan for his dedication and contributions to Yahoo for the past seven years," said Yahoo in a statement. "We wish him well in his next endeavor. Ash Munshi, chief technology officer, will oversee Yahoo Labs."

The news comes at a time when Yahoo has been making headlines already with its restructuring.

According to's Kara Swisher (News - Alert), Yahoo’s Chief Executive Officer Scott Thompson is planning a companywide restructuring that could see thousands of Yahoo employees laid off. Swisher cited numerous unnamed sources with knowledge of the planned layoffs, who said that the restructuring announcement could come as soon as the end of this month.

Yahoo has yet to confirm that report.

Swisher's article said that Yahoo's products organization, public relations, marketing, research, marginal businesses and weaker regional efforts were among the business units likely to see considerable staffing reductions. It’s also rumored that each Yahoo business unit will be asked to show either significant cost savings or a credible plan to achieve rapid revenue growth.

“Some parts will be cut away, leaving resources to go to better efforts,” said one person close to the situation, who noted specific announcements could take longer than this month. “But this has to be a true change to get this company back on track.”

Yahoo currently has about 14,000 employees, according to its latest earnings report.

Edited by Rich Steeves