Scott Galloway, a leader of the Harbinger Capital “activist” investor team that bought a 19% stake in the New York Times (NYT) two years ago, will not be asking for reelection on the company’s board.
Galloway, Firebrand Partners founder and NYU brand strategy professor, told the Times that he will leave the board after the company’s yearly meeting on April 27.
“Bittersweet, great experience…but time to move on,” Galloway wrote on his Twitter feed. He has not returned messages for further comment. Update: Galloway told us in an email that he declined to comment beyond the Times’ official release.
Two years ago, Phil Falcone-backed Harbinger Capital poised to shake up the Times Co.’s business practices by demanding that the board add two members, Galloway and James Kohlberg, the chairman of Kohlberg & Company.
They were the first of outsiders of the Ochs-Sulzberger family to elbow their way onto the board.
In November, Phil Falcone-backed Harbinger dropped Times stock so he only owns 14.64% of the company, or about $230 million worth of company stock, according to SEC filings. The company’s original investment was about a half of a billion dollars, Reuters reports.
The Times doesn’t plan to replace Galloway, so the board will shrink to 13 members. Kohlberg plans to ask for re-election, according to the Times.
As we reported in January, Daniel Cohen, Times publisher Arthur Sulzberger Jr.’s cousin and one of his closest advisers, is also leaving the board. He has served since 2007.
Sulzberger’s canned statement: “Since 2007, Dan has served as a director with dedication and commitment. We are grateful for his vision and wisdom during these past years. Scott also has contributed greatly to the Company during his two years as a director. Both have played a critical role in the advancement of the Company’s strategic objectives in a challenging economic environment.”
For Cohen’s replacement, the Times nominated Carolyn Greenspon, a 41-year-old psychotherapist who works at McLean Hospital in Wellesley, Mass. She was the first of the fifth generation to serve on the Times’ board of trustees. “As a fifth-generation member of the Ochs/Sulzberger family, she brings a deep understanding of our Company’s historic mission and its long-term business objectives,” according to Sulzberger.
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