Yahoo Search VP Larry Cornett Leaves

Larry Cornett, Yahoo’s Vice President of Search Consumer Products, is leaving the company he’s worked for four years, he announced today on his personal blog. His departure was first reported by Search Engine Land. The news comes just over two weeks after Yahoo laid off a portion of its search team, likely as a result of the Bing/Yahoo search deal. At the time, Yahoo declined to give any numbers on the number of people who were axed, but they did give us this statement:

“Yahoo! remains focused on innovating the overall Search experience over the long-term, and the Yahoo! Search group is hard at work on some new experiences that we believe will convert Yahoo! users to Yahoo! searchers. To accomplish our new product objectives, we have decided that we need a different combination of talent and are making changes within the search group in order to more deeply invest in other areas of the group. “

Cornett’s departure probably isn’t a coincidence. In his blog post, Cornett writes that he’s going to be launching a new startup (currently in stealth) and will also be starting a consulting firm. Cornett also took the opportunity to recap some of the things Yahoo’s Search team did in the last few years.

From his blog:

• Relaunching Yahoo! Search in Oct 2007 with industry-leading Search Assist features
• Bringing structured data into Web Search for the first time with Y! SearchMonkey
• Opening up Search technology to the world like never before with the Yahoo! Search BOSS platform
• Bringing true applications to Search with Search Pad
• Launching an entirely new Y! Search experience again in Sep 2009
• Creating incredibly engaging Image and Video Search experiences
• Integrating Twitter and real-time content in Nov 2009
• An addictive entertainment Search experience that launched this March
• And finally, the truly fun Yahoo! Sketch-a-Search app on the iPhone