On Tuesday, struggling Internet company Yahoo yhoo chose Silicon Valley veteran Carol Bartz to turn around its fortunes after a bumpy three-year stretch.
Bartz's selection ends Yahoo's two-month search to replace co-founder Jerry Yang, who relinquished the CEO post after separate deals with rivals Microsoft msft and Google goog fell through and its stock price plummeted.
Yahoo also announced that Yahoo President Susan Decker, who was mentioned as a possible CEO candidate, will resign after an unspecified transition period.
"Yahoo has been battered in the last year," Bartz said in a conference call with analysts. "We will focus on being our best in geographic and vertical markets — and kick some butt."
Autodesk, adsk which specializes in design software for architects and engineers, flourished under Bartz, who was its CEO from 1992 to 2006, and remains executive chairman.
Bartz, 60, known for her focused leadership and direct manner, will face a number of challenges to shore up Yahoo's flagging financial performance and stock price.
Some investors have lobbied for a breakup of the Internet giant so that it can more nimbly compete with Google and Microsoft.
Bartz's tough leadership record indicates she will act quickly and boldly, analysts say.
"She understands all the different forces in technology," says Brent Thill, an analyst at Citi Investment Research. "She is 100% focused on winning and understands what works and doesn't work."
As a board member of Cisco Systems and a former executive at Sun Microsystems and DEC, Bartz has often competed with Microsoft.
But that does not preclude her from selling Yahoo's search operations to Microsoft. "My bet is that pragmatism rules, she does the deal and then unifies the board behind a new direction," says independent analyst Jonathan Yarmis.
Microsoft had been reluctant to deal with Yahoo because Yang rebuffed several of its takeover offers, including a $47.5 billion offer to buy all of Yahoo in May.
Microsoft withdrew the bid, valued at $33 a share. A subsequent search deal with Google unraveled in November after antitrust regulators threatened to block it.
Yahoo shares rose 3% Tuesday in after-hours trading, to $12.48, after its CEO announcement.
During Bartz's tenure as Autodesk CEO, its annual revenue swelled to $1.5 billion from $285 million, and its stock price soared.