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March 19, 2015

Yahoo Closes China Office, Cutting Up to 300 Jobs

Yahoo Sunnyvale headquarters. (Y! Photo / Brian McGuiness)

Yahoo is shutting down its China operations, eliminating as many as 300 jobs.

The Beijing office was strictly a research and development center, and offered no products. The employees were informed of the closure on Wednesday, a company spokeswoman said.

Marissa Mayer

Marissa Mayer

“We are constantly making changes to realign resources and to foster better collaboration and innovation across our business,” a statement from Yahoo reads. “We will be consolidating certain functions into fewer offices, including to our headquarters in Sunnyvale, Calif.”

Although Yahoo declined to comment on the number of employees affected, sources told Bloomberg  the office employed 200 to 300 people. That accounts for approximately two percent of Yahoo’s 12,500-employee strong global workforce.

The company has also eliminated roughly 600 other jobs in the past six months, at offices in Canada and India.

The closure of the China office comes as CEO Marissa Mayer faces pressure to reduce expenses from activist investor Starboard Value LP. Starboard, a major shareholder that is well known for instigating shareholder rebellions, is pressuring Mayer to reduce expenses by at least $500 million.

Starboard has been critical of Mayer for several months now and found fault with the $1.6 billion she has spent to acquire more than 30 small companies and start-ups in the past few years.

The investor has also decried her reluctance to merge with AOL. It wants Yahoo to join its Web and e-mail business with AOL.