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Starboard Ends eBay Fight Following CEO Selection

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Published: April 21st, 2020
The activist fund managed by Jeff Smith said it was 'excited' about the online marketplace company’s decision to hire former Walmart executive Jamie Iannone to the company's top post.

Starboard Value LP announced April 16 it had canceled its minority-slate proxy fight at eBay Inc. (EBAY), citing the company’s recent decision to hire a new CEO as the main factor.

The online marketplace on April 13 announced it hired a former Walmart Inc. (WMT) and SamsClub.com executive as well as a previous eBay employee, Jamie Iannone, as CEO.

The hiring, which ends a seven-month search, and the subsequent settlement came as Starboard had looked to install four dissident director candidates, including managing member Peter Feld, in a proxy fight.

In a joint statement with eBay April 16, Starboard said it was withdrawing its candidates while Feld said the fund was “excited” about the hiring of an “accomplished CEO.”

Iannone spent nearly eight years at eBay as a vice president and in other roles earlier in his career. He most recently was COO of Walmart Inc. (WMT) eCommerce and before that was CEO of Walmart’s SamsClub.com.

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