Ex-Yahoo CEO Scott Thompson resigns from Splunk board

SAN FRANCISCO, Mon May 21, 2012 – Data analytics software maker Splunk Inc. said former Yahoo Inc. CEO Scott Thompson has resigned from its board of directors, effective May 18.

“In regard to recent health issues, we wish Scott all the best for a fast and full recovery,” Splunk Chief Executive Godfrey Sullivan said in a statement.

Thompson, who had joined Splunk’s board in October, was reported to have been diagnosed with thyroid cancer.

Thompson stepped down as Yahoo chief last week, 10 days after activist investor Daniel Loeb accused him of padding his biography by faking a computer science degree.

Last week, Thomson had also resigned from the board of networking gear maker F5 Networks.

Thomson is also a board member of analytics and data management software provider Vertica Systems Inc. – owned by Hewlett-Packard Co. – and Zuora Inc.

Yahoo set for growth post management reshuffle: analysts

SAN FRANCISCO, Mon May 14, 2012 – Yahoo Inc.’s sweeping out of its chief executive and settling of a proxy fight with an investor open a path for stable growth for the troubled company, analysts said.

On Sunday, Yahoo said its global media head, Ross Levinsohn, will be interim CEO. Levinsohn, who made his name running News Corp.’s Fox digital business, is often mentioned as a CEO contender.

Scott Thompson was the third CEO Yahoo replaced in as many years. The company also gave three board seats to a hedge fund led by Daniel Loeb.

Analysts were positive about Levinsohn’s appointment. His background is seen to be essential for Yahoo to strengthen its media offering and improve its display advertising business.

“While this likely prolongs current turnaround efforts at the company, it may create a more stable and focused organization going forward,” said ThinkEquity’s Ronald Josey.

Yahoo could avoid a proxy fight and now has a board which will be more proactive and shareholder-friendly, said J.P. Morgan analyst Doug Anmuth.

However, Anmuth said the management shuffle and board changes raised questions about the timing of the possible sale of Yahoo’s stake in China’s Alibaba Group. A delay there may disappoint short-term investors.

Yahoo shares, which are up 5 percent since Third Point disclosed a stake in the company in September last year, closed at $15.19 on Friday on the Nasdaq.

Yahoo board to review CEO’s education records

SAN FRANCISCO, Fri May 4, 2012 – Yahoo Inc.’s board of directors will review a discrepancy in the educational record of its chief executive, Scott Thompson, a spokesman told Reuters, after activist hedge fund Third Point accused Thompson of padding his academic credentials.

Yahoo will also make an appropriate disclosure to shareholders when the review is complete, the spokesman said.

On Thursday, Third Point’s founder and chief executive, Dan Loeb, wrote in a letter to Yahoo’s board that Thompson claims to hold a bachelor’s degree in accounting and computer science from Stonehill College near Boston, but said Thompson “embellished his academic credentials” because the CEO’s degree is in accounting only.

Third Point owns 5.81 percent of Yahoo’s shares and has been fighting to gain seats on the company’s board.

Early on Thursday, a Yahoo spokesman called the discrepancy an “inadvertent error.”

“Scott Thompson received a bachelor of science degree in business administration with a major in accounting from Stonehill college,” the spokesman said in an emailed statement. “There was an inadvertent error that stated Mr. Thompson also holds a degree in computer science,” he added.

Yahoo to name Scott Thompson new CEO, according to report

SUNNYVALE, Calif. ― Yahoo is poised to name PayPal President Scott Thompson as chief executive after firing former CEO Carol Bartz in September, website AllThingsD reported, citing sources close to the situation.

Former Web powerhouse Yahoo is undergoing a strategic review as it struggles to compete with newer heavyweights Google and Facebook. It has been run by interim CEO and former chief financial officer Tim Morse since Bartz’s departure.

Thompson has been running PayPal, the online payments unit of eBay, since early 2008, and was previously its chief technology officer. PayPal processed $29 billion in payments in the third quarter of 2011.

Both Yahoo and PayPal declined to comment on the AllThingsD report on Wednesday.

Yahoo, whose services include mail, search, news and photo-sharing, was a Web pioneer that grew rapidly in the 1990s but has been struggling to maintain its relevance and advertising revenues in the face of competition from newer rivals.

In 2008, Yahoo rejected an unsolicited takeover bid from Microsoft worth about $44 billion. Its share price was subsequently hammered during the global financial crisis and its current market value is about $20 billion.

Co-founder Jerry Yang stepped down in late 2008 after being severely criticized by investors for his handling of the bid. The company cut thousands of jobs and later agreed an advertising and search partnership with Microsoft.

Recently, Yahoo has been discussing slashing its stakes in China’s Alibaba Group and its Japanese affiliate as part of a share deal worth about $17 billion, according to sources familiar with the situation.

Alibaba has also hired a Washington lobbying firm in a sign that the Chinese e-commerce company would be willing to make a bid for all of Yahoo in the event that talks to unwind their Asian partnership fail.