Billionaire investor T. Boone Pickens has sold all his holdings in Yahoo Inc. in a pique over the way the Internet company’s management handled sales talks with Microsoft Corp.
Pickens told the San Francisco Chronicle that he sold all 10 million of his Yahoo shares, at a loss, because he grew frustrated with the company’s repeated rebuffs of Microsoft’s advances.
“I think that Yahoo management was pathetic,” Pickens told the Chronicle in a story published Tuesday.
Pickens declined to quantify his losses, but he acquired his stake in mid-May when Yahoo was trading between $24 and $28 a share.
Yahoo’s stock price hasn’t climbed above $22.50 for the last week, meaning Pickens probably lost tens of millions of dollars. Yahoo shares gained 3 cents Tuesday to finish at $20.15.
Other dismayed shareholders are expected to blast Yahoo Chief Executive Jerry Yang and his fellow board members at the company’s annual meeting Friday.
Many shareholders are infuriated because Yang, acting on behalf of the board, rejected Microsoft’s offer to buy Yahoo for $33 a share in early May.
Microsoft withdrew the bid after Yang countered with a price of $37 a share, a level Yahoo’s stock hasn’t reached in 2 1/2 years.