Ouch. Last week, Yahoo saw the vice president in charge of its developer network split to start-up Automattic. Now there's news that another Yahoo vice president has departed. This time it's Rob Solomon, who was vice president and general manager of Yahoo Shopping. He's heading over to travel search engine SideStep, to become the new president and CEO. You'll find a relatively recent interview with Rob from his Yahoo days here at ComparisonEngines.com. The release isn't up yet at SiteStep's press release area yet, so here's what we were sent:
Yahoo! Executive Appointed CEO of SideStep Rob Solomon to Run Travel Search Leader
SANTA CLARA, Calif. January 16, 2006 SideStep, the traveler's search engine, announced that Rob Solomon has been chosen as the company's new president and chief executive officer. Solomon has also been named to SideStep's board of directors. He was formerly vice president and general manager of the Yahoo! Shopping Group (YHOO), where he was instrumental in building one of the largest commerce destinations on the Internet.
Solomon's vertical search expertise is considerable, having significantly grown one of the Web's premiere vertical search sites Yahoo! Shopping. Additionally, he brings extensive experience in the travel industry to SideStep, having run Yahoo!'s travel business. Solomon was with Yahoo! for six years.
"Rob Solomon has the track record and ingenuity to strengthen SideStep's position as the leader in travel search and ultimately continue to transform the online travel market," said Jim Barnett, SideStep's chairman of the board. "A veteran of portal and search wars, Rob has seen and touched all aspects of Yahoo!'s business from startup to hyper-growth. He possesses the knowledge and leadership to take SideStep to the next level and capitalize on a search engine on the verge of mass expansion."
SideStep leads the travel search category, one of the hottest sectors of the $63.5 billion online travel industry (PhoCusWright). SideStep.com searches hundreds of travel brands to find flight, hotel, rental car and vacation bargains around the globe. In addition, it generates approximately $1 billion in gross bookings annually for its partners.
"SideStep is an innovative company with a strong heritage a six year history that began with creating the vertical search market," said Solomon. "I believe in its mission to revolutionize the online travel search sector and look forward to leading the executive team to continue to define and extend a leadership role within the category."
Solomon brings a blend of consumer, commerce, travel and Internet search experience to SideStep. Having served as a Yahoo! corporate officer, Solomon has proven strategy, product and leadership skills. He was instrumental in driving major accolades for Yahoo! including, Shopping Search Engine of the Year (Search Engine Watch) and top ratings in key Comparison Shopping Reports (Consumer Reports and Forbes). He brings relevant experience from top companies such as consumer technology leader Electronic Arts and travel services powerhouse Cendant Corp. A UC Berkeley graduate, Solomon begins his new post on January 23, 2006.