And, later in the day, keeping its options open, Microsoft (MSFT) leaked many of the names* on the slate of directors it plans to file if instead it goes forward with a proxy fight. The list has 10 nominees and three alternates, says the WSJ. The nominees include:
- John Chapple, former Nextel Partners Inc. CEO
- Edward Meyer, former Grey Global Group Inc. CEO
- Jaynie Studenmund, former chief operating officer of Overture Services (acquired by Yahoo) and
- Vanessa Wittman, Adelphia Communications Corp. CFO
Lots of “formers” in there. And not a lot of Valley bench strength. But we guess that’s to be expected. (The nominees, after all, will have a short tenure in which they do one thing: vote to merge with Microsoft.)
*UPDATE: A Microsoft source says Microsoft did not leak these names. We can believe that, given the underwhelming impact of them, but that begs the question as to who else would have leaked them. We suppose Yahoo could have leaked them, in hopes of triggering a unanimous conclusion that the only folks Microsoft could find to take the job were a bunch of has-been puppets, but that seems a stretch: The names don’t pack a big punch, certainly, but they’re not wholly unimpressive. We guess the names could have been leaked by the people on the list, who are tired of sitting around waiting, but this, too, seems unlikely.
See Also: Ballmer Ups Ante, Threatens To Walk
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