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Third Point LLC Letter To Yahoo! Board Of Directors Regarding Discovery Of Discrepancies In Educational Records Of CEO Scott Thompson And Director Patti Hart

NEW YORK, May 3, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Third Point LLC, owners of 5.8% of Yahoo! shares, sent the following letter today to the Yahoo! (NASD: YHOO) Board of Directors:

May 3, 2012

Board of DirectorsYahoo! Inc.701 First Avenue Sunnyvale, CA 94089

Dear Board of Directors:

According to the Yahoo! Form 10-K/A, filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on April 27, 2012, newly-hired Chief Executive Officer, Scott Thompson, "holds a Bachelor's degree in accounting and computer science" from Stonehill College.  This assertion was repeated in the Company's draft proxy statement, also filed with the SEC on April 27, 2012, as well as on the Company's website ( http://pressroom.yahoo.net/pr/ycorp/scott-thompson.aspx).

A rudimentary Google search reveals a Stonehill College alumni announcement stating that Mr. Thompson's degree is in accounting only.  That announcement is consistent with other documents (including filings with the SEC) that reflect Mr. Thompson received a degree in accounting, but not computer science. 

Upon recognizing this discrepancy, Third Point initially assumed that the documents we had reviewed were incorrect and the representations in Yahoo!'s public filings were accurate.   However, we were then informed by Stonehill College that Mr. Thompson did indeed graduate with a degree in accounting only.  Furthermore, Stonehill College informed us that it did not begin awarding computer science degrees until 1983 — four years after Mr. Thompson graduated.  We inquired whether Mr. Thompson had taken a large number of computer science courses, perhaps allowing him to justify to himself that he had "earned" such a degree.  Instead, we learned that during Mr. Thompson's tenure at Stonehill only one such course was even offered – Intro to Computer Science.  Presumably, Mr. Thompson took that course.

If Mr. Thompson embellished his academic credentials we think that it 1) undermines his credibility as a technology expert and 2) reflects poorly on the character of the CEO who has been tasked with leading Yahoo! at this critical juncture.  Now more than ever Yahoo! investors need a trustworthy CEO. 

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