The morning that Aol CEO Tim Armstrong announced the $315 million acquisition of the Huffington Post, he stood beside a beaming Arianna Huffington in the company’s Broadway headquarters.
Watching from the back of the room, I remember Huffington proudly declaring that her sister, Agapi Stassinopoulos, whom she had brought with her, still used an Aol e-mail address.
The couple hundred assembled Aol workers, already disoriented by the surprise merger, greeted this with a tentative cheer that seemed to trail off into a question mark. Even employees found it hard to reconcile the company’s ambitions as a world-beating tech giant with the unfashionable reality of having Aol e-mail.
As a lifelong Hotmail user, smirking at the hipster apocalypse that was yesterday’s Gmail outage, I beg to differ.
Small Attempts At Big Questions
Your papers, please: Texas Republican Randy Neugebauer of the House Financial Services committee asked the New York Fed for all of its communications pertaining to Libor with the 16 banks under investigation for manipulating interbank lending rates dated between August 2007 and July of this year.
Hey, big boy: Several groups of traders Read More
David Carr used his Media Equation column this week to ask: What is Yahoo? pegged to the new appointment of former Google-r Marissa Meyer in the company’s top spot. It’s a funny column (“After five minutes of listening to [former Yahoo CEO Carol Bartz] I still had no idea.”) and an even better question. So: What in the way of answers?
Scott Thompson, you’ll remember, is the former Yahoo chief executive ousted last month afteractivist investor Dan Loeb uncovered inaccuracies on Mr. Thompson’s resume. Brian Dunn, meanwhile, was the CEO of Best Buy until April, when he left the company amid an investigation that eventually revealed Mr. Dunn had what the polite press called an “inappropriate relationship” with an employee.
A bug in JPMorgan’s chief investment office led to discord. A glitch in Nasdaq’s system delayed Facebook’s IPO. The next big insider trading trial opens today. And more, in today’s Wall Street roundup.
Down-tick: The London and New York desks of JPMorgan’s chief investment office had long been at odds, and shouting matches were common Read More
Three JPMorgan executives tied to the massive trading losses announced last week are expected to resign, Yahoo CEO Scott Thompson stands aside and a hedge fund calls for Aubrey McClendon’s head. Here’s the morning Wall Street roundup:
If, inexplicably, you’re not interested in JPMorgan’s stunning $2 billion loss on a derivatives position accumulated by a trader known as Voldemoort, the London whale and just plain old Bruno Iksil, we’ve got the news from the rest of Wall Street:
The ax appears to be falling first on Patti S. Hart, the Yahoo! director who helmed the committee that selected Scott Thompson as chief executive, as Dealbook reports that Ms. Hart will not stand for reelection to the company board.
The news comes after investor Dan Loeb discovered inaccuracies on the resumes of Read More
Burden of Proof
Zuck enters Facebook’s first road show presentation by the side door, Yahoo! CEO says sorry for … the distraction and a financier with fashion sense steps in to save Barney’s from bankruptcy court. Today’s morning roundup:
Road show: Mark Zuckerberg slipped into the midtown Sheraton through a side door to address investors yesterday, and left in the company of “a dozen beefy security guards,” the Journal reports, as Facebook kicked off its IPO road show. The presentation opened with a 30-minute video presentation available here. Following a delay while Facebook’s 27-year-old CEO was apparently having a hard time finding his way back from the bathroom, Zuck, Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg and Chief Financial Officer David Ebersman fielded questions on the company’s strategies for China, mobile revenues and its recent $1 billion Instagram acquisition. With excitement building, analysts have been quick to offer opinions on Facebook, with Sterne Agee slapping a buy on the company and Wedbush Securities assigning a $44 price target to the stock.
So sorry: Yahoo! CEO Scott Thompson apologized to employees for lying on his … wait, no, for the distraction caused by the “disclosure of my academic credentials.” You can find the whole letter (addressed “Yahoos:”) over at Dealbook. Third Point Capital’s Dan Loeb has been calling for Mr. Thompson to step down since last week, when the hedge fund manager asserted that the executive lied on his resume.
Trader exodus: Nearly two dozen of Wall Street’s most profitable credit traders have defected from banks in the past 13 months, Bloomberg reports, as lenders cut bonuses and regulators seek to limit the types of trading banks can engage in.
Chopping red tape: Bank of America data chief John Bottega has a fourth-degree black belt in Okinawa karate, so watch what you say about consolidating bank data, a cause Bottega championed in a previous position at the New York Fed.
Dan Loeb seems like the kind of guy who knows his way around a box of documents. That’s bad news for Yahoo!, because he’s likely to get just that after requesting board records under a Delaware legal provision, a professor at the state’s Widener School of Law says.
Here’s the catch-up: Mr. Loeb uncovered the lie on Yahoo! boss Scott Thompson’s resume by calling Stonehill College and enquiring if the institution offered a computer science major at the time of Thompson’s graduation (it didn’t). He uncovered the lie on the resume of Patti S. Hart, the director who headed the hiring process that landed Thompson at Yahoo!’s helm, by comparing the credentials listed in a 1991 press release with those supplied in 1998.
Now it looks like Mr. Loeb, manager of hedge fund Third Point Capital, may get access to all records, minutes, e-mails and notes pertaining to the hiring process—a scary thought if you’re Mr. Thompson, Ms. Hart, of the Willkie Farr & Gallagher associates tasked with the document dive.