Hedge fund wants Yahoo! CEO ousted

A hedge fund with a large stake in Yahoo! on Friday demanded the immediate ouster of chief executive Scott Thompson, saying he had lost credibility by misrepresenting his educational background.

The move by the investment fund Third Point stepped up an ugly battle over control of the struggling Internet pioneer.

Third Point, which failed to win an accord for a slate of Yahoo! board members, said inaccuracies on the bios of Thompson and independent director Patti Hart should be cause for their removal.

Yahoo! acknowledged Thursday an "inadvertent error" in the CEO's online bio, which wrongly indicated that he had a degree in computer science.

It said Hart, who had claimed a bachelor's degree in marketing and economics from Illinois State University, actually had a business administration degree with a specialty in marketing.

"While we appreciate the board's statement late last night that it would conduct an investigation, unfortunately, for this board and this company, it is too little and months too late," Third Point said in a letter.

"Irreparable damage to Yahoo!'s culture will continue every day that the board allows Mr Thompson and Ms Hart to remain at the helm of the company after having clearly demonstrated that they lack even the 'minimum qualifications for service.'"

It set a deadline of noon Monday, saying the board should "terminate Mr Thompson for cause immediately given his demonstrable unsuitability... and accept the resignation of Ms Hart for similar reasons."

Thompson "cannot possibly have any credibility remaining with the all-important Yahoo! engineers, many of which earned real 'not invented' degrees in computer science," the letter said.

Responding to the latest demand, Yahoo! said it was continuing its review.

"The board is reviewing this matter and, upon completion of its review, will make an appropriate disclosure to shareholders," a company statement said.

Until late Thursday, the company's website had said Thompson had received a bachelor's degree in accounting and computer science from Stonehill College.

Yahoo! later admitted, however, that Thompson had received a bachelor of science degree in business administration with a major in accounting from Stonehill.

Yahoo! appointed Thompson in January, hoping the former head of online payments site PayPal, a division of eBay, could revive the Internet giant, which has been losing the battle over online ads.

The revelation about Thompson also prompted Yahoo! investor Eric Jackson of Ironfire Capital to join the call for the CEO's removal.

"I think Thompson's got to go," he told the San Jose Mercury News.

"Putting shareholders aside, I don't know how any engineer at Yahoo! could listen to that guy from now on and not think in the back of their mind, 'Why in the heck would you make up that you studied computer science?' It's going to be completely distracting.

"Maybe he can reconstruct his reputation somewhere else."

Third Point, led by activist investor Daniel Loeb, claims to own 5.8 percent of Yahoo! shares. The company's board has repeatedly rejected a slate of directors that includes Loeb.

Third Point also said it wants details on "the process by which (Yahoo!) vetted Mr Thompson as a potential CEO candidate" and information about whether any other board member "was aware of Mr Thompson's deception prior to receipt of Third Point's letter yesterday."

Hart led the search committee that picked Thompson.

Loading...

Editor’s note:Yahoo Philippines encourages responsible comments that add dimension to the discussion. No bashing or hate speech, please. You can express your opinion without slamming others or making derogatory remarks.

  • Que nails first title in 3 years

    The three-time Asian Tour champion, who bounced back from a mediocre start of 72 and 71 with a fiery 66 Friday to tie Tabuena at helm, pooled a 72-hole total of seven-under 281 to nail the elusive win on the ICTSI Philippine Golf Tour worth P650,000. Hounded by poor putting, Tabuena went birdie-less for the first time in a long while but still stayed in the title hunt with a slew of pars at the back until he bogeyed the 17th and fell by two. …

  • Church: Donate to ‘Alay Kapwa’

    An official of the Church’s social action arm has asked the faithful to be generous when making a donation to "Alay Kapwa" today, Palm Sunday, which is also designated as Alay Kapwa Sunday.   Fr. Edu Gariguez, executive secretary of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines-National Secretariat for Social Action (CBCP-NASSA), said the faithful should generously give to Alay Kapwa as the amount collected will be used as emergency funds for crisis and calamities both from natural and …

  • ‘PNP’s systematic anti-crime drive to be sustained

    Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) secretary Manuel ‘Mar’ Roxas II vowed to sustain the Philippine National Police’s (PNP) deliberate, programmatic and determined approach in fighting criminality.  “The President and Filipino people can be assured that the PNP will not slow down in its mission of fighting criminality, not only in Metro Manila but nationwide," said Roxas, who bared that there has been a significant drop in criminal activities within Metro Manila, especially …

  • Visayas grid to benefit from new Luzon power plants

    Owing to the existing transmission interconnection, Visayas grid is seen benefitting from the projected ‘oversupply’ that may saturate Luzon in the next three years. The Department of Energy and players from the power industry have noted the scant flow of capital for new power projects in Visayas, but they underscored that the transmission link-up would enable the sharing of energy between the two grids. First Gen executive vice president Ernesto B. Pantangco, who is also vice president of …

  • Arroyo’s co-accused permitted to undergo hospital procedure

    A co-accused of former President and now Pampanga Representative Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo in a plunder case has been allowed by the Sandiganbayan First Division to undergo a medical procedure tomorrow. The graft court permitted former Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) board member Benigno Aguas, who was also its former budget and accounts manager, to undergo a cardiopulmonary/endocrine clearance procedure at the St. Luke's Medical Center in Quezon City this morning. Aguas, who is …

  • Petron expands petroleum retail operations

    Following the completion of its re-branding on acquired assets, leading Philippine oil firm Petron Corporation is now setting its goal on expanding its retail network in Malaysian petroleum market. The company has emphasized “20 more sites are in various stages of construction and commissioning.” On the downstream petroleum industry, it is the first time that a Filipino firm had brought its brand to an offshore market. It is technically some sort of ‘symbiosis’ when it comes to investments …

  • PAGASA: Storm may enter PH by Wednesday

    It may be a wet and windy Holy Week due to an erstwhile low pressure area which has intensified into a tropical storm with international name "Maysak,” according to the Japan Meteorological Agency.As of yesterday morning, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) estimated the cyclone at about 3,300 kilometers east of Mindanao and outside the Philippine area of responsibility (PAR).Should it maintain its present speed and track, it may enter the …

  • News In Brief

    The weighted average rate stands at P44.796 MINDANAO INFRASTRUCTURE SHARE INCREASED In a bid to boost the Mindanao economy, the Philippine government has increased the southern island’s share of the 2015 infrastructure budget to 30%, or around $4 billion, said Public Works and Highways Secretary Rogelio Singson at the Philippines Investment Forum in Manila last week. “In 10 years’ time it’s still likely to be 30% because while the Philippines is committed to growing renewables, demand will …

POLL

Should Aquino be held accountable over the Mamasapano operations?

Loading...
Poll Choice Options