LinkedIn connects with ex-Yahoo exec as new CEO

Jun 24, 2009 By MICHAEL LIEDTKE , AP Technology Writer

(AP) -- After six months of grooming, LinkedIn Corp. founder Reid Hoffman has decided former Yahoo Inc. executive Jeff Weiner is ready to take over his job running the Internet's largest site devoted to professional networking.

The change in command announced Wednesday isn't a surprise, given that Hoffman brought in Weiner as LinkedIn's interim president to start the year. Weiner joined as Hoffman reclaimed his job as the Mountain View-based company's chief executive from Dan Nye, whom he hired to run LinkedIn in early 2007.

"It became real clear to both of us that this was the next logical extension," Weiner said of his working relationship with Hoffman.

Weiner, 39, hasn't been a CEO previously, but he has experience overseeing an operation even larger than LinkedIn.

In his last position during a seven-year stint at , Weiner oversaw Yahoo's front page, e-mail, search engine and news. That Yahoo division generated about $3 billion in annual revenue and employed more than 3,000 people.

Privately held LinkedIn doesn't disclose its revenue. It employs about 350 people.

Weiner left Yahoo a year ago, around the same time that the Sunnyvale-based company signed an Internet search advertising deal with rival Inc. that later unraveled under regulatory pressure.

Although he's stepping down as CEO for the second time in a little over two years, Hoffman, 41, will remain one of LinkedIn's guiding forces as the company's executive chairman and largest individual .

But Weiner will assume the primary responsibility for keeping LinkedIn on a profitable path that could culminate in an of stock.

In a joint interview, Hoffman and Weiner declined to set a timetable for an . Without providing specific figures, Hoffman said LinkedIn has been profitable for the past two years and is on course to make money again this year.

LinkedIn already has built one of the Internet's best-known franchises by connecting people interested in broadening their professional horizons. About 42 million people have set up profiles on LinkedIn's site, turning it into a valuable resource for headhunters and prospective employers. LinkedIn remains far smaller than the Web's biggest networking sites, Facebook and MySpace, which are more about having fun than work.

Some recruiters and businesses have been willing to pay LinkedIn a special fee for expanded access to users' profiles. LinkedIn gets most of its remaining revenue from advertising sales.

The formula has worked well enough to secure LinkedIn a market value of about $1 billion, based on $80 million in investments made in the company last year. LinkedIn's investors include Greylock Partners, where Weiner went to work an executive-in-residence after quitting Yahoo.

©2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Explore further: Most internet anonymity software leaks users' details

Related Stories

Ted Hoffman joins Smith Micro

Dec 19, 2005

A former Verizon Wireless executive has been named to the Smith Micro Board, the company announced Monday.

Yahoo's feeble 1Q triggers nearly 700 more layoffs

Apr 21, 2009

(AP) -- Yahoo Inc.'s first-quarter results tread familiar ground as the Internet company's financial erosion triggered another round of layoffs and management promised better days ahead.

Yahoo open to Microsoft deal under right terms

May 27, 2009

(AP) -- Yahoo Inc.'s chief executive said Wednesday that she is open to joining forces with Microsoft Corp. so both companies can better compete in Internet search, but a deal would need a specific set of terms - including ...

Recommended for you

Most internet anonymity software leaks users' details

5 hours ago

Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) are legal and increasingly popular for individuals wanting to circumvent censorship, avoid mass surveillance or access geographically limited services like Netflix and BBC ...

WikiLeaks says NSA spied on French business

7 hours ago

WikiLeaks has released documents that it says show that the U.S. National Security Agency eavesdropped on France's top finance officials and high-stakes French export bids over a decade in what the group called targeted economic ...

Google gets extended deadline to answer EU case

8 hours ago

Brussels has given Google an extension until mid-August to answer an anti-trust case alleging that the tech giant abuses its search engine's market dominance, a company spokesman said Monday.

Facebook opens first Africa office

11 hours ago

Facebook announced Monday it had opened its first African office in Johannesburg as part of its efforts "to help people and businesses connect" on the continent.

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.