Marissa Mayer, the 40-year-old chief executive of Yahoo, has revealed that she is expecting identical twin girls in December.
The Silicon Valley chief told the world of her pregnancy with a blog post that said she would "approach the pregnancy and delivery as I did with my son three years ago, taking limited time away and working throughout".
The twins came as a complete surprise, she writes, as she has "no family history of twins or any other predisposing factors".
When Mayer’s first child, Macallister Bogue, was born in 2012 she famously took just two weeks off from work, generating global debate on how much time women should take away from the work place to have a baby.
She built a nursery in her office for the child, something which few executives could aspire to, never mind ordinary workers.
Mayer's news comes as Yahoo prepares to spin off its stake in Alibaba Group to investors. The deal is expected to be completed in the fourth quarter.
Yahoo was once the gateway to the internet and was worth billions of dollars in the late 1990s, but then lost its way as Google took over as the search engine of choice for most internet users.
In July, Yahoo reported a 15 per cent increase in second-quarter revenue to $1.24bn, but the increase in sales came at a cost.
Yahoo bought traffic by striking deals with its partners, pushing the search company to a $22 million loss in the quarter.
In the UK, the debate over senior female executives and maternity leave was recently reignited by the news that Marks & Spencer’s most senior woman Laura Wade-Gery is to take four months off from her role, to welcome her first child into the family.