Former Yahoo CEO Carol Bartz
Former Yahoo CEO Carol Bartz REUTERS

Internet company Yahoo Inc is preparing to retrench between 600 and 700 employees ahead of a holiday trimming due to its lackluster growth, media reports said citing unnamed sources.

Yahoo has not made a formal announcement as reports say employees could be notified of the job cuts earliest on Tuesday.

The latest planned lay off is said to be Yahoo’s fourth mass retrenchment in last three years and it represents about 5 percent of the company’s workforce of 14,100 employees.

This round of cutbacks is expected to be concentrated in the Internet company’s U.S products division.

Reports said the last two reductions had come under its current chief executive Carol Bartz, who was hired nearly two years ago to engineer a turnaround that hasn’t happened.

Yahoo’s U.S products division has been undergoing an overhaul since Bartz hired former Microsoft Corp. executive Blake Irving to run the division last spring.

The Sunnyvale-based company reported less than a 2 percent growth in revenue during the first nine months of the year to $4.8 billion as Yahoo experienced difficulty in selling ads when other Internet companies Google Inc and Facebook are thriving.

Google’s revenue rose 23 percent to about $21 billion during the same period, while Facebook, which doesn’t disclose its results, moved into a larger campus earlier this year.

Yahoo CEO Bartz, 62, whose contract expires in January 2013, has cautioned it might take another year or two for the company to show a significant improvement in its financial performance.

Share prices of Yahoo fell 31 cents to close at $16.70 on Monday, a few cents below where it ended last year even as the technology-driven Nasdaq composite index rose 16 percent so far this year.