AOL (NYSE: AOL), the No. 7 website, said management had re-elected all its candidates to the board of directors, defeating three challengers nominated by Starboard Value Management, a hedge fund that owns 5.3 percent of the company.
All incumbents were re-elected including CEO Tim Armstrong, 41, who's been leading efforts to improve performance. AOL announced the results before its annual meeting opened in Boston Thursday. Starboard Value had mounted an extensive proxy battle.
We intend to be responsive to the messages we heard from our investors, AOL said in a corporate statement.
Separately, representatives for Starboard Value took credit for goading management into taking steps to increase shareholder value. AOL adopted many of our suggestions, taking AOL stock from near an all-time low to near an all-time high.
Two independent shareholder advisory services had backed the election of Starboard CEO Jeffrey C. Miller to the board and one had recommended the election of a second nominee, Dennis Miller.
Shares of AOL fell as much as 7 percent to $24.96 before closing at $25.57, down $1.53 or 5.7 percent in Thursday trading.Despite the fall, they've gained nearly 68 percent this year.