Yahoo! chief! says! sorry! for! CV! snafu!
Thompson says will cooperate with board's review
Yahoo!'s CEO Scott Thompson has issued an emailed apology for his gilded CV to employees at the company, as the board decides what it's going to do about his misstated education.
Thompson is in hot water over a discrepancy in his CV that said he held a computer science degree when he doesn't, an issue Yahoo! called "an inadvertent error". The mistake was brought to light by agitating investor Third Point, which has been annoyed by many of the web firm's decisions lately.
Thompson emailed employees today after Third Point posted another letter with the SEC demanding all the records relating to his hiring.
"I want you to know how deeply I regret how this issue has affected the company and all of you," Thompson wrote in an email reproduced by the Financial Times. "We have all been working very hard to move the company forward, and this has had the opposite effect.
"For that I take full responsibility, and I want to apologise to you."
After the news broke of Thompson's padded CV and another discrepancy in the listed education for Patti Hart – a board member who was also on the committee that hired Thompson – Yahoo! initially reacted a bit casually, claiming it was nothing more than an error. However, later the same day the web firm said the board would undertake a review.
Thompson's email said he would "provide whatever the board needs from me" for the review.
But Third Point wants the full records of his hiring as well as the appointments of Patti Hart and other board members Peter Liguori, John Hayes, Thomas McInerney, Maynard Webb, and Fred Amoroso.
"Third Point believes that Yahoo! shareholders and employees will be best served if the board accepts responsibility quickly for this latest debacle," the investment firm said in its letter.
"If the directors are truly interested in 'working in a constructive manner with Third Point', they should provide answers promptly. We believe that this internal investigation by this board must not be conducted behind a veil of secrecy and shareholders deserve total transparency."
Activist investor Third Point and its chief executive Daniel Loeb has been a thorn in Yahoo!'s side for some time now, demanding resignations, pushing for asset sales and trying to get its own men and women on the board. ®