Daniel Loeb, head of New York-based Third Point hedge fund, has decided to resign from the board of Yahoo (NASDAQ:YHOO) after a 15-month stint, and he is selling a majority of Third Point's stake in the company for more than $1 billion, media reports said, but not before he voiced a vote of confidence for the Internet giant's future and its leadership.
Loeb is expected to leave at the end of this month, and according to a Yahoo press release, Third Point will sell 40 million shares back to the company at $29.11 a share, for a total sale price of $1.16 billion. This leaves Loeb’s hedge fund with another 20 million shares in the company, which is less than 2 percent of Yahoo's outstanding common stock.
Two other board members -- Harry J. Wilson and Michael J. Wolf -- are also resigning from their posts, effective July 31.
"Harry, Michael and I are pleased to have played key roles in Yahoo's resurgence since we joined the Board last spring," Loeb said in a statement. "Since our Board's rigorous search led us to hire Marissa Mayer as CEO, Yahoo!'s stock price has nearly doubled, delivering significant value for shareholders. I'm confident that with Marissa at the helm and her team's focus on innovation and engaging users, Yahoo! has a bright future."
Loeb’s involvement with Yahoo led him to push Mayer, who came from Google, to helm the troubled company, ousting former CEO Scott Thompson only four months after he took over the role amid a controversy involving discrepancies in his resume.
Loeb was instrumental in Thompson's departure after he learned that Thompson’s official biography did not match his academic records. Reportedly, Thompson’s resume mentioned a computer science degree that he never received.
“Daniel Loeb had the vision to see Yahoo for its immense potential -- the potential to return to greatness as a company and the potential to deliver significant shareholder value,” Mayer said in a statement that announced the departure of Loeb, Wilson and Wolf from the company’s board.
“They have been incredibly supportive as we have built our executive staff and developed our strategy, and they have helped position Yahoo! for future success. While there's still a lot of work ahead, they’ve given us a great foundation.”
Keerthi Mohan is an IBTimes reporter covering entertainment and human interest stories.