Sunday 21 January 2018

The Punt: Twins no trouble for Yahoo boss

Marissa Mayer
Marissa Mayer

Yahoo chief executive Marissa Mayer has announced that she's pregnant with twins.

But you'd be a fool if you think that will slow down the tech hotshot.

In fact, she's keen to point out that her razor-sharp focus on the job will remain just that, and she won't let the new additions distract her too much.

"Since this is a unique time in Yahoo's transformation, I plan to approach the pregnancy and delivery as I did with my son three years ago, taking limited time away and working throughout," she wrote in a blog post yesterday.

Mayer, aged 40, was pregnant when she joined Yahoo as chief executive in July 2012 and gave birth to a baby boy in September that year.

She worked from home after the birth and came back to the office just two weeks later.

Mayer's pregnancy comes at a critical time for Yahoo, which is preparing to spin off its stake in Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba and considers the future of its holding in Yahoo Japan.

The Silicon Valley supremo should, however, have no problems affording a nice creche for the two new arrivals. Mayer has a net worth of about $380m, according to Forbes.

And the tech boss's pay package jumped 69pc to $42m in 2014.

A Smurfit back in the hot seat

From yesterday, a Smurfit was back in charge of Ireland's biggest packaging business - for the first time in over a decade. Tony Smurfit officially took over the reins yesterday at Smurfit Kappa from Gary McGann, (who, at 65, is ostensibly retiring but doing nothing of the sort).

Monaco resident Tony Smurfit (51) had been chief operations officer at Smurfit Kappa since 2002 - the same year McGann was made CEO - when the company was known as Jefferson Smurfit prior to its 2005 merger with Dutch firm Kappa. Before that, he was deputy chief executive of Smurfit Europe.

Smurfit's father Michael, also a Monaco resident, headed Jefferson Smurfit as chief executive until 2002, when he retired and became chairman. When Smurfit Kappa floated on the stock exchange in 2007, he wasn't on the board.

Tony Smurfit has been more than a capable pair of hands at Smurfit Kappa, which has undergone a transformation over the past few years in particular as it slashed costs and cut its debt pile. It's still a cyclical business, but an expanded geographic presence helps to lessen the impacts of swings and roundabouts.

Irish Independent

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