How Do You Solve A Problem Like Marissa?

There’s been a sharp response to the post I wrote last Wednesday in Forbes outlining the rationale for either Alibaba or SoftBank buying Yahoo at current levels.

The stock is up 6.5% since that story first was published on heavy volume.

To me, the strong response by investors to the story suggests one thing to me loud and clear: investors would rather get all of the cash coming back to Yahoo from the pending Alibaba IPO as well as what’s already on the balance sheet, rather than see CEO Marissa Mayer and her management team spend it on value-destroying acquisitions.

Mayer has been CEO at Yahoo for two years now.  She was absolutely dealt a tough hand, which I think any other CEO, whether Ross Levinsohn or anyone else, would have been challenged to turn around.  In fact, I spoke out in her defense early on after her hiring, asking several critics to give her more time to work at her turnaround.  Two years after her hiring, however, I think it’s fair to point out that she has made a number of costly and largely self-inflicted errors since taking over.

These include:

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