Yahoo! has admitted that errors were made in the voting results that led to the re-election of its board on August 1. The board will remain in place although the number of votes against certain members was greater than first reported.
The internet company has been told by independent voting intermediary Broadridge Financial Services, which processed proxy votes on behalf of banks, brokers and financial institutions, that errors were made in voting results for “withholds” or abstentions. The truncation error occurred in reporting share numbers that exceeded eight digits.
The corrected numbers now show that Jerry Yang, Yahoo! co-founder and chief executive, had 66.3% votes for his re-election and 33.7% withheld. Yang was originally reported to have polled 85.4% of the vote for his re-election and 14.6% against. Yahoo! chairman Roy Bostock took 60.4% votes for his re-election in the recalculated results, with 39.6% of votes withheld. Bostock was originally reported as taking 79.5% for him to carry on as chairman and with 20.5% abstaining.
The re-count will take the shine off the board’s re-election for some of its members and shows that many shareholders are still angry that at Yang for snubbing Microsoft’s $48bn (£24bn) offer for Yahoo!. The vote came about after one of Yahoo!’s largest shareholders, Capital Research Global, demanded a recount of the number of votes cast against the re-elected Yang.
Billionaire investor, Carl Icahn, who had launched an attack on the Yahoo! board for not taking up Microsoft’s offer, is one of the shareholders understood to be unhappy with Yang at the helm. Despite this he has struck a deal to be elected to the Yahoo! board. Icahn has previously had talks with Microsoft over an attempt to oust the Yahoo! board.