Yahoo is in hot pursuit of a new CEO. And as the one-time tech leader scans the landscape of available talent, it need not look much further than Seattle online advertising startup AdReady.
Kara Swisher at All Things D has been floating a number of possible candidates for the post, noting that Yahoo is looking for someone with advertising expertise who has led big teams at publicly-traded companies with a “collaborative” approach. (In other words, distancing itself from the Carol Bartz approach).
Interestingly, many roads appear to point to AdReady.
Consider this: Three of the candidates on Swisher’s short list are either board members or advisers at the company.
Last week, Swisher reported that Yahoo was interested in both Brian McAndrews — the venture capitalist at Madrona Venture Group who previously served as CEO of aQuantive — and Jason Kilar — a former Amazon.com executive who now leads Hulu. (McAndrews declined to comment about the rumors).
Both serve on AdReady’s board.
Today, Swisher floated another possible candidate, noting that former DoubleClick CEO David Rosenblatt’s advertising and e-commerce experience would make him one of the “better choices for CEO of Yahoo.”
Rosenblatt, who also sits on the boards of Twitter and IAC, is an advisory board member at AdReady.
The connections make sense. AdReady is a specialist in online display advertising, one of Yahoo’s historical strengths.
Interestingly, AdReady has been discussed in the past as a possible acquisition target for Yahoo. If Yahoo goes with one of the AdReady board members, could those talks heat up again?
Founded by Aaron Finn and led by former aQuantive exec Karl Siebrecht, AdReady is backed by Khosla Ventures, Madrona Venture Group and others.
Of course, Yahoo could go an entirely different direction with its Yahoo search. And, in that category, Swisher floats another name that should be familiar in these parts: Former Microsoft CFO Chris Liddell.
Of course, given the strong ties between Microsoft and Yahoo, having an executive who can navigate the two tech giants might make a lot of sense.