Yahoo's new CIO will have to focus on mobile, video and security

Yahoo headquarters
Yahoo headquarters

Yahoo has hired Mike Kail to serve as CIO and SVP of Infrastructure. Kail leaves his most recent role as VP of Operations at Netflix.

At Yahoo Kail will be responsible for Yahoo's IT and data center operations. He will report directly to CEO Marissa Mayer. Kail has worked in IT operations for more than 23 years, including stints at Attensity and Chumby Industries.

From 2011 until he left his post, Kail managed Netflix's client and enterprise technology services. He oversaw Unix systems and storage, network engineering, telecommunications, ad technology and database architecture, among other things.

Recent departures

Kail joins a C-level unit that has witnessed a lot of upheaval over the past year. His predecessor, David Dibble, and Media head Mickie Rosen, left the company in July of last year. Dibble remained with Yahoo as an advisor and retained his annual salary of $650,000.

In January, Yahoo COO Henrique de Castro, was fired by Mayer one year after he was poached from Google. He earned a $58 million severance for 15 months of work.

Kail's tasks

Yahoo has recently focused on replacing Google as the default search engine on Apple's iOS devices. Since she joined the company in 2012, Mayer has built a mobile team of more than 500 employees, and the company has made approximately 30 mobile-based acquisitions. Yahoo recently acquired mobile advertising analytics company Flurry for at least $300 million.

Mayer is also intent on incorporating video into its specific news verticals, including finance and sports. In May, Mayer was also quoted as saying Yahoo would produce its own Netflix-style original video content.

It won't all be mobile and video for Kail. He will also be responsible for ensuring Yahoo does a better job managing security. In January, Yahoo email user data was accessed by hackers. Earlier the same month, Yahoo's advertising servers were found to have been distributing malware to hundreds of thousands of users.