Trillium Asset Management, an activist investment fund focused on social and environmental responsibility, has filed a shareholder proposal at Verizon that would tie executive compensation at the telecommunications giant to its performance against cybersecurity and data privacy goals:
Verizon shareholders request the appropriate board committee(s) publish a report (at reasonable expense, within a reasonable time, and omitting confidential or propriety information) assessing the feasibility of integrating cyber security and data privacy metrics into the performance measures of senior executives under the company’s compensation incentive plans. …
Currently, Verizon links senior executive compensation to diversity metrics and carbon intensity metrics. Cyber security and data privacy are vitally important issues for Verizon and should be integrated as appropriate into senior executive compensation as we believe it would incentivize leadership to reduce needless risk, enhance financial performance, and increase accountability.
The proposal points to several data breaches in the company’s recent history, including one that affected 1.5 million customers in 2016 and another affecting 6 million last year. It also expresses concern about the growing number of users whose data the company is now responsible for safeguarding following its acquisition of Yahoo and AOL, which will expand Verizon’s digital advertising reach to 2 billion people.
Although Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer says she is staying on as the Internet pioneer is acquired by Verizon, the Wall Street Journal’s Deepa Seetharaman reports that “few executive recruiters and Silicon Valley investors expect her to stick around after the sale is completed”:
And while Ms. Mayer is certainly young enough to lead another company, experts say it is tough to rebound from a rookie reign many observers see as pocked by mistakes that complicated an already-difficult turnaround. Yahoo’s revenue stalled and it failed to deliver consistent profitability.
That makes it unlikely that she will land a job at the top of another public company anytime soon, but she still has a bright future ahead of her:
Another possibility is a role as an investor or adviser to fledgling companies, some people said. Or Ms. Mayer could bring her product expertise to an operational role at another company. “There will be no shortage of tech startups that would love to talk to her about having her be their CEO,” said Iain Grant, partner at executive search firm Riviera Partners. He added that venture-capital firms in Silicon Valley would also covet Ms. Mayer’s experience. …
Verizon has agreed to buy Yahoo’s core business for $4.8 billion, acquiring the early Internet behemoth’s web services along with their 1 billion daily users. Yahoo’s embattled CEO Marissa Mayer is staying on, however, writing in a statement that the deal is “a great opportunity for Yahoo to build further distribution and accelerate our work in mobile, video, native advertising, and social”:
The teams here have not only built incredible products and technologies, but have built Yahoo into one of the most iconic, and universally well-liked companies in the world. One that continues to impact the lives of more than a billion people. I’m incredibly proud of everything that we’ve achieved, and I’m incredibly proud of our team. For me personally, I’m planning to stay. I love Yahoo, and I believe in all of you. It’s important to me to see Yahoo into its next chapter.
As we work to close this agreement in Q1 2017, it’s more important than ever that we come together as one global team to continue executing on our strategic plan through the remainder of the year. We have delivered the first half of the year with pride, achieving our goals. Now, it is up to us to make Yahoo’s final quarters as an independent company count. Yahoo is a company that changed the world. Now, we will continue to, with even greater scale, in combination with Verizon and AOL.
The job of integrating Yahoo with AOL, which Verizon acquired last year for $4.4 billion, will fall to executive vice president and president of product innovation Marni Walden, whose role Business Insider’s Lara O’Reilly describes as “evolving Verizon from an analog business into a firm that can battle with the digital media giants and explore new technologies like ‘the internet of things’ and telematics”: