Levchin: I joined Yahoo board after Mayer's 'very ballsy move'

The PayPal co-founder says new CEO Melissa Mayer's inspiring move to Yahoo was just one factor of a few that helped him make his decision.

Don Reisinger
CNET contributor Don Reisinger is a technology columnist who has covered everything from HDTVs to computers to Flowbee Haircut Systems. Besides his work with CNET, Don's work has been featured in a variety of other publications including PC World and a host of Ziff-Davis publications.
Don Reisinger
2 min read
Max Levchin
Max Levchin Dan Farber

After Yahoo announced that Max Levchin was appointed to its board, the PayPal co-founder and Silicon Valley all-star took to his blog to explain his reasoning for accepting the position.

According to Levchin, his decision centered on three areas -- personal, business, and sentimental. On the personal side, he said that he has for a long time "respected Marissa [Mayer's] talent and tenacity," adding that her decision to take over Yahoo "was a very ballsy move, and when she asked for my help, I was excited about working with her."

On the business side, Levchin said that he believes a "stronger, fast-growing Yahoo" is best for Silicon Valley and the "U.S. economy." Finally, Levchin said that he couldn't help but want to help a company that helped him get started in startups.

Yahoo! was one of the first true giants created by this amazing new thing, the Web. Before Google or Facebook, before almost everything there was Jerry's Guide, right up there with What's New page in Mosaic. Through amazing luck, I was a Computer Science freshman at UIUC in '93, which gave me a glimpse into the fantastic future we are now living. Yahoo! showed me that computer geeks can start companies that create that future. I'd love to do my part in helping the company that inspired me.

For her part, Marissa Mayer welcomed Levchin to the board, saying that he's "someone I've admired throughout my career for his phenomenal sense for great products and keen focus on user experiences."

Levchin has had quite a career. After co-founder PayPal and selling it to eBay in 2002 for $1.5 billion, he went on to start the social-media company Slide, which was eventually acquired by Google in 2010. He's now running HVF, a company operating in the Big Data space.

In addition to Levchin's arrival, Yahoo has lost two board members: Weather Channel CEO David Kenny and Intuit CEO Brad Smith.

(Via All Things Digital)