Yahoo Dropping Enterprise Division

 
 
By Matthew Hicks  |  Posted 2003-10-31
 
 
 

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Yahoo Inc. has begun dismantling its enterprise software group as part of a plan to merge functions of its corporate-oriented products—such as its enterprise instant messaging service—with the consumer side of the business, the company said on Friday.

As a first step, the Sunnyvale, Calif., Internet company last week laid off an undisclosed number of people in the division, named Yahoo Enterprise Solutions. Yahoo spokesman Chris Homan declined to provide further details on the layoffs.

Yahoo Enterprise Solutions was formed about two years ago and has handled development, marketing and sales for a group of products targeted to business. Most recently, Yahoo Business Messenger, the enterprise companion to Yahoos popular IM service, has been a major focus of the group.

The enterprise division also oversaw corporate portal offerings that included the My Yahoo EE (Enterprise Edition) suite of web-based applications and tools and the Yahoo Companion EE customizable browser toolbar for accessing a corporate portal. None of the enterprise offerings will be discontinued, Homan said, and enterprise customers will continue to receive the same level of service and support.

"We will be moving enterprise products into their complementary consumer service areas," Homan said. "We can blend teams for much better synergies for engineering, product development and addressing the market space."

Employees involved with Business Messenger and related projects will become part of the communications division at Yahoo that oversees the consumer-focused Yahoo Messenger service, he said.

Yahoo is still determining the consumer-side match up for many of the other enterprise products, Homan said.

Steve Boom, the senior vice president overseeing Yahoo Enterprise Services, will continue in his work with Business Messenger.

Yahoo earlier in October announced that it had completed the integration of web conferencing from partner WebEx Communications Inc with Yahoo Business Messenger as part of a more aggressive push into corporate IM.

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