Carl Icahn Blasts EBay, Read His Open Letter

He accuses eBay of 'multiple lapses in corporate governance'

Activist investor Carl Icahn has a new target: online auction website eBay (EBAY).

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In a letter sent to the EBAY shareholders on Monday, Carl Icahn upbraided EBAY for “multiple lapses in corporate governance.” Icahn, who revealed that he has acquired a 2.15% stake in EBAY, also urged EBAY board members Marc Andreessen and Scott Cook to step down, Reuters notes. EBAY shares rose about 3% in Monday mid-day trading.

Carl Icahn is promoting two nominees he would like to place on the EBAY board of directors. He noted that Andreessen had invested in rivals to EBAY and its PayPal online payment system, and pointed to the discounted 2009 sale of Skype to an investor group that included Andreessen.

EBAY issued a statement calling Andreessen and Cook “impeccably qualified” and describing Icahn’s letter as “mudslinging.” EBAY also noted that Andreessen had recused himself from deliberations over the sale of Skype.

In his letter, Carl Icahn also assailed EBAY CEO John Donahue, questioning how shareholder value could be discussed when the CEO “seems to be completely asleep or, even worse, either naive or willfully blind to these grave lapses of accountability and stockholder value destruction?”

Carl Icahn recently abandoned an effort to force Apple (AAPL) to significantly raise its planned share repurchase program.

You can read the full text of  Carl Icahn’s letter to EBAY shareholders at Icahn’s website.

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