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Yahoo! Confirms Job Elimination of Approx. 2,000 Employees; Facebook Counter Sues Yahoo! over 10 Patent Infringement

Finally, after serveral days, Yahoo! officially confirmed that it’s restructuring and laying off 2,000 employees. In a April 4 blog post, Yahoo’s CEO Scott Thompson, stated:

“Today’s actions are an important next step toward a bold, new Yahoo! – smaller, nimbler, more profitable and better equipped to innovate as fast as our customers and our industry require. Our goal is to get back to our core purpose – putting our users and advertisers first – and we are moving aggressively to achieve that goal,” said Thompson. “Unfortunately, reaching that goal requires the tough decision to eliminate positions. We deeply value our people and all they’ve contributed to Yahoo!.”

Adding, he said, “Today, the company will begin the process of informing employees about these changes. As part of that effort, approximately 2,000 people will be notified of job elimination or phased transition.”

“Yahoo! expects to realize approximately $375 million of annualized savings upon completion of all employee transitions. The company currently expects to recognize the majority of an estimated $125 to $145 million pretax cash charge relating to employee severance in its second quarter financial results. The company may incur additional charges in connection with this action. More information will be provided about Yahoo!’s future direction in conjunction with the release of its first quarter financial results on April 17, 2012,” said Thompson.

Yahoo currently has about 14,000 employees. The company hasn’t indicated where the axe will fall. But looking at the Thompson’s blog post filing the elimination seems to be happening in the Yahoo’s “America Region, APAC Region, EMEA Region.”

Meanwhile, AllThingsD’s Kara Swisher speculates that layoffs will be across the board but hit several areas in particular. Per Swisher:

“The layoffs, which will touch all units of the company, are expected to hit hardest in the product division, which is headed by Blake Irving . . .

But the fate of two key parts of the soon-to-be-blown-apart unit — Yahoo’s advertising technology businesses, Right Media and APT, and its search business — is still being contemplated . . . Also set to be hard hit are Yahoo’s local businesses, as well as its marketing and research divisions . . .”

Facebook Counter sues Yahoo over 10 Patents infringmentWhile on Yahoo!, Facebook has filed a counter suit alleging patent infringement on Yahoo!. In the filing, Facebook alleges that Yahoo was infringing on 10 of its patents related to the operation of its web services and social networking.

According to the suit, Facebook said that Yahoo services, ranging from the Yahoo home page to the company’s Flickr platform as well as its Games and Sports sites, make use of technologies that infringe its patent rights.

Additionally, Facebook issued a categorical denial of a series of patent infringement claims filed by Yahoo. Facebook has long said that it would be contesting Yahoo’s claims.

“From the outset, we said we would defend ourselves vigorously against Yahoo’s lawsuit, and today we filed our answer as well as counter-claims against Yahoo for infringing 10 of Facebook’s patents,” a Facebook spokesperson said. “While we are asserting patent claims of our own, we do so in response to Yahoo’s short-sighted decision to attack one of its partners and prioritise litigation over innovation.”

Facebook alleges that the infringing services account for some $4 billion in revenues. In particular, Facebook alleged that Yahoo’s services violate its patents on news feeds, tagging media files, and posting headlines. “Eight of Facebook’s patents concerned in the lawsuit were acquired as part of a recent deal with IBM. The other two were developed internally, including one attributed to company founder Mark Zuckerberg.”

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