No Early Trial Date For Yahoo

Icahn loses this round

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The Carl Icahn side of the Yahoo chess match suffered a set back after a Delaware judge refused to grant an expedited trial to decide whether CEO Jerry Yang and board chairman Roy Bostock should be held financially responsible for blocking a Microsoft acquisition and for designing a so-called "poison pill" to jack up the cost of an acquisition.

Hostile investors led by Icahn pushed for an early court date to decide the case in advance of the annual shareholders meeting on August 1. Along with a declaration that Yang and Bostock had ignored their fiduciary responsibility to shareholders, the suit seeks to invalidate Yahoo’s employee retention plan, which detractors called a severance plan or poison pill upping the cost of acquisition by as much as $2.4 billion.

The plan takes effect irrevocably in the event of a new board, a proxy fight which Icahn has begun and is likely to win, and/or in the event of a Microsoft acquisition. The retention plan offers generous severance and benefits if an employee loses his job or resigns for "good reason," a caveat Icahn thought much too vague. 

All of these matters, what won’t be settled at the meeting anyway, will be settled afterward in court, it seems.

No Early Trial Date For Yahoo
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