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BW Businessworld

Don’t Applaud Just Yet

Media giant Viacom’s nasty corporate power struggle finally ended with the 93-year-old mogul Sumner Redstone remaining atop his empire and chief executive Philippe Dauman walking out

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Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and wife Priscilla Chan, who pledged 99 per cent of their Facebook fortune to philanthropic causes, which means donating around $45 billion over the span of their lifetime, just sold 767,905 of their personal shares of the company. They are worth about $95 million before taxes, and all designated for charity. This is the first round of funding for the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative that was announced by the couple in December. As great as it all is, the couple hasn’t actually distributed these funds yet — or even said how they will do so.

From Africa To Jail
After 10 years in Namibia, former Comverse Technology CEO Jacob (Kobi) Alexander pleaded guilty to securities fraud in a federal court in Brooklyn. He was, however, promptly thrown in jail by an irate judge who refused to release the fugitive fraudster on $25 million bail. Alexander faces up to 10 years in prison. The Israeli citizen and legal resident of the US, fled to Africa in 2006 with family after learning that he was under investigation by the Feds for a scheme to backdate stock options.

Big Misfit!
Barnes & Noble CEO Ronald D. Boire is dismissed after a tumultuous tenure that lasted a little less than a year. The company said, “Boire is not a good fit for the organisation.” He is the third CEO to leave the troubled company in just three years, after Michael P. Huseby in July 2015, and William Lynch in July 2013. Founder Leonard Riggio will lead the company until a successor to Boire is appointed.

A Golden Handshake
Media giant Viacom’s nasty corporate power struggle finally ended with the 93-year-old mogul Sumner Redstone remaining atop his empire and chief executive Philippe Dauman walking out. On the bright side however, Dauman is to get a $58 million severance package with $46.4 million ‘payable on the release date’ and the remainder to be paid over the next two years. He will also receive a portion of this year’s $20 million target bonus ‘for the 323 calendar days elapsed in fiscal year 2016 through the effective date’, according to a regulatory filing.

The Richest Gets Richer
Yes, that’s Bill Gates. The Microsoft co-founder’s estimated net worth hit a record high of $90 billion on 19 August after his holdings in Canadian National Railway Company and Ecolab rose in value, according to a Bloomberg report. This is the first time Gates’ wealth has reached $90 billion. Gates is by far the world’s wealthiest person. Although occasionally surpassed in recent years by the likes of Mexican tycoon Carlos Slim, Gates has held strong this year.

Turn Of Events
With the end of his tenure as joint managing director, Sunil Munjal has ceased to be a promoter in two-wheeler maker Hero MotoCorp. In August, the company announced an ‘ownership realignment’, just months after the death of Hero Group patriarch Brijmohan Lall Munjal, wherein Sunil was asked to step down from Hero Motocorp headed by his brother Pawan.

So It Begins...
Anil Ambani’s eldest son Anmol has entered the big league as additional director at financial services firm Reliance Capital, which is promoted by Anil. The 24-year-old with a bachelor’s degree in management from UK’s Warwick Business School has been working with Reliance Capital since 2014.

Not Here For Long

The National Commodity & Derivatives Exchange has cut short the extension in the tenure of its CEO Samir Shah to a year, barely two months after shareholders approved another three years for the CEO. The exchange has now sought Sebi’s approval for Shah to serve only one year starting August 20.