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Yahoo Names PayPal Exec Thompson CEO

Yahoo, the troubled Internet company, named former PayPal president Scott Thompson as its new CEO.

Thompson replaces Carol Bartz, who was dismissed last September after 2½ year as CEO.

"Scott brings to Yahoo a proven record of building on a solid foundation of existing assets and resources to reignite innovation and drive growth, precisely the formula we need at Yahoo," Roy Bostock, chairman of the Yahoo board, said in a statement. "His deep understanding of online businesses combined with his team building and operational capabilities will restore the energy, focus, and momentum necessary to grow the core business and deliver increased value for our shareholders."

"Yahoo is an industry icon and I am very excited about the prospect of working with one of the great teams in the online world to deliver Yahoo!'s next era of success," Thompson said. "With the ultimate goal of delivering the value our shareholders expect, my immediate focus will be on getting to know the entire team and hearing more from all Yahoos, working closely with the engineers and product teams, and diving deeply into our products and services to learn more about what our more than 700 million users find most engaging and useful."

One analyst called the hiring an incrementally positive development for Yahoo. "We believe that Scott Thompson has been a strong operator at PayPal," said Anthony DiClemente of Barclay's Capital. "We think he is an ideal candidate in that he has a proven track record and has had a leadership role at a major web 1.0 company that has successfully become a significant Web 2.0 company."

DiClemente added that Thompson's appointment does not rule out the possibilities that the company will split off its Asian assets, Alibaba Group and Softbank, a move that could unlock their value.

The stock market was not too impressed. Yahoo shares were down 2.36% at $15.90 in mid-day trading.