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Yahoo CEO Scott Thompson Facing termination

Back in September of 2011, Yahoo made headlines by giving their then current CEO, Carol Bartz, the boot. Yahoo had grown intolerant of the lack of action being taken to turn around the company. About four months ago, Yahoo hired former Paypal President, Chief Technology Officer, and Senior Vice President Scott Thompson.Yahoo-Screen-shot

Thompson now serves as the Yahoo CEO, but for how long? Thompson has recently come under fire for supposedly padding his résumé, something that many people have done. The issue does not lie in his overall qualifications, but in his educational history. Thompson graduated from Stonehill College, a small college in close proximity to Boston, in 1979. He claims to have earned a dual degree, one in Accounting and one in Computer Science. The issue at hand is the fact that Thompson only earned his Accounting degree, having never earned a computer science degree anywhere. Although this information is only coming to the national spotlight now it has been an issue in the past.

Back in 2009, when Thompson was still the President of PayPal, Kara Swisher, a columnist for the Wall Street Journal and co-founder of All Things Digital, interviewed him. In that interview Thompson lied about his educational history, claiming again to have that dual degree.

Now Yahoo is caught in a whirlwind, trying to decide the fate of their current CEO. There are two distinct ends of the argument to look at. The first is, “Fire him!”, after all he lied on his resume and other CEOs have been fired for lesser offenses. It must be noted that the false information was found on his Yahoo Biography, not his actual résumé. The other end of the argument is, “Keep him!”. Yahoo may have initially supported the latter argument for multiple reasons. Thompson is undoubtedly good at what he does. Despite not actually having a computer science degree, his real life experience far surpasses it. Additionally, Yahoo would pay a hefty pay-out to Thompson if they were to fire him.

Daniel Loeb, a major shareholder of Yahoo, is demanding for the Yahoo CEO’s immediate termination, also stating the argument that others have been fired for lesser offenses. Loeb has given Yahoo an ultimatum, fire Thompson by noontime on May 7 or quite possibly face legal action. What currently keeps Thompson still employed as Yahoo CEO is the possibility that the claim on his official Yahoo biography was erroneous on somebody else’s part. During Thompson’s time with PayPal, the official payment service of EBay, EBay only listed Thompson’s accounting degree with the Securities and Exchange Commission. In contrast Yahoo listed Thompson as holding the previously claimed dual degree and filed that information with the Securities and Exchange Commission. As of the fourth of May, Yahoo had not yet changed the erroneous information with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Currently, the fate of Yahoo CEO Scott Thompson lies in the balance. Not only that but that ultimate fate of the company lies in the balance. Yahoo stock has plummeted to $20 a share. About four years ago, Microsoft offered to purchase Yahoo for $33 a share, amounting to $46 billion. Private investors have also shown interest in purchasing shares in Yahoo, offering anywhere from $16 to $17.50 a share, twice as less as Microsoft.

It is apparent that Yahoo has enough problems to deal with and having to find a new CEO could lead to bigger problems. Also, Thompson is undoubtedly qualified for the job and has already laid off 2,000 people in an effort to cut costs, this being just one part of his plan. In the end, bringing in a new CEO at this time could prove disastrous, but the fate of Yahoo CEO Scott Thompson still remains unclear.

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