SAN FRANCISCO — A major Yahoo shareholder has made a legal demand for internal records about the embattled Internet company's hiring of CEO Scott Thompson.
Activist hedge fund Third Point LLC took that unusual step Monday as part of its effort to oust Thompson for an inaccuracy about his academic credentials.
Even before he joined Yahoo four months ago, Thompson's bio has periodically listed a bachelor's degree in computer science that he never received. The exaggeration was most recently repeated in an April 27 filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
After exposing the fabrication last week, Third Point set a noon Eastern Time deadline Monday for Yahoo to fire Thompson for unethical conduct. That deadline passed without any change in Thompson's status.
Several experts in corporate ethics and board governance have said the deception regarding Thompson's education probably merits ending his short reign as CEO.
The push to get him fired is unfolding against the backdrop of Third Point's campaign to gain four seats on Yahoo's board.
Third Point wants to review Yahoo Inc. documents that may explain how much research the company's board did about Thompson before hiring him in January. The fund contends it's entitled to the records under the laws of Delaware, where Yahoo is incorporated.
Yahoo, which is based in Sunnyvale, Calif., didn't respond to requests for comment. Yahoo has promised to share its findings about Thompson's bio with shareholders when the board completes an inquiry.
Third Point, which has invested about $1 billion to acquire a 5.8 percent stake in Yahoo, wants to do its own digging into what happened. Besides demanding the internal records leading to Thompson's hiring, Third Point is seeking documents on the selection of six directors.