Yahoo! Picks Interim CEO; Loeb to Join Board
SUNNYVALE, Calif. (TheStreet) -- Yahoo!(YHOO) Sunday announced that CEO Scott Thompson has stepped down and that the company has reached a settlement with activist hedge fund manager Daniel Loeb's Third Point LLC.
In a news release, the Internet company said it had appointed Ross Levinsohn, Yahoo!'s global head of media, to serve as interim CEO, effective immediately.
The Sunnyvale-Calif.-based company's board also named Fred Amoroso as Chairman of the Board of Directors, effective immediately. Amoroso joined the board in February. He replaces Roy Bostock, who has stepped down as nonexecutive chairman.
The release did not mention the reasons for Thompson's departure, but the changes come amid controversy over his biography. The executive had said he had received a computer science degree from Stonehill College, but activist shareholder Loeb recently attacked that claim as incorrect.
Thompson's ouster and the Third Point settlement were reported earlier Sunday by All Things D and The New York Times' DealBook.
As part of the settlement, three Third Point board nominees -- Daniel Loeb, Harry Wilson and Michael Wolf -- will join the Yahoo! board on May 16.
Along with Bostock, current board members Patti Hart, VJ Joshi, Arthur Kern and Gary Wilson will step down immediately. Hart led the executive search committee to find Thompson.
Under Loeb, Third Point, which owns 5.8% of Yahoo! common stock, had been waging a proxy battle and sharply criticizing Yahoo! Under the settlement, Third Point will withdraw previous board nominations at the annual meeting and vote for Yahoo!'s nominees.