Scott Thompson out as Yahoo CEO
After a week of controversy over his resume, the company announces his departure
IDG News Service - Embattled Yahoo CEO Scott Thompson has left the company, Yahoo announced Sunday, after more than a week of controversy over questions about embellishments to his resume.
Ross Levinsohn, who is the company's head of global media, will serve as interim CEO while the board searches for a permanent replacement. Fred Amoroso has been named chairman of the board, Yahoo also announced. Those changes are effective immediately.
Thompson was hired in early January and was the third CEO to be tapped in just a little over three years, and this latest incident is sure to continue the ongoing turmoil that Yahoo, a pioneer in the Web portal space, has endured.
Besides the executive shuffling, the company also struck a deal to end a proxy fight by activist shareholder Daniel Loeb, who leads the Third Point investment fund, which owns about 5.8 percent of Yahoo. Loeb was the one who brought the resume embellishment to light and notified the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission of it, plunging the company into its latest controversy. Loeb and two of four other people that he had pushed the board to name as directors will be seated on the board. The other two are Michael J. Wolf and Harry Wilson. Former NBC chief Jeff Zucker, who was the fourth candidate proposed by Loeb, has been withdrawn as a board nominee.
Five current members of the board who were to leave their positions at the company's upcoming annual meeting will resign their posts as of Wednesday, the company said. Besides non-executive Chairman Roy Bostock, whom Amoroso replaces, they are Patti Hart, VJ Joshi, Arthur Kern and Gary Wilson.
"The Board is pleased to announce these changes and the settlement with Third Point, and is confident that they will serve the best interests of our shareholders and further accelerate the substantial advances the Company has made operationally and organizationally since last August," Yahoo said in a statement announcing the changes.
Thompson's departure comes "after a poorly handled controversy," Jeff Kagan, an independent technology analyst said in an email Sunday. "Yahoo has been struggling over recent years and this new incident only makes matters worse for the company."
He predicted that "this CEO mess is going to leave Yahoo all tied up for at least several more quarters."
Thompson, who was previously an executive with eBay, was hired by Yahoo to try to get the struggling Internet company back on track after years of leadership changes in the midst of unsteady financial performance and competitive pressure from Google and more recently from Facebook. But then Loeb pushed his own slate of candidates -- himself included -- for the board of directors and as part of that, revealed that Thompson did not have a college degree in accounting and computer science, contrary to what was on his resume and information in the company's financial filings.
- Data on the Move = Business on the Move; How Strategic Secure Managed File Transfer Adds Value and Drives Business This whitepaper describes the formal and informal file-sharing methods business employees use to perform their daily functions and explains that, from sending small...
- Path Selection Infographic Path Selection Infographic
- Hyperconvergence Infographic A wide range of observers agree that data centers are now entering an era of "hyperconvergence" that will raise network traffic levels faster...
- Preparing Your Infrastructure for the Hyperconvergence Era From cloud computing and virtualization to mobility and unified communications, an array of innovative technologies is transforming today's data centers.
- Supercharge Your Web and Mobile App Development with High-Productivity Hybrid Cloud Webinar: Hear from industry experts about the amazing power at the intersection of next-generation web and mobile application development and cloud platforms.
- Cloud Knowledge Vault Learn how your organization can benefit from the scalability, flexibility, and performance that the cloud offers through the short videos and other resources... All Internet White Papers | Webcasts
Our new weekly Consumerization of IT newsletter covers a wide range of trends including BYOD, smartphones, tablets, MDM, cloud, social and what it all means for IT. Subscribe now and stay up to date!