Facebook nixes plan to create new class of stock

25 September, 2017, 12:54 | Author: Patsy Dennis
  • REUTERS  Thomas White  File

Facebook has withdrawn a proposal to create a new class of its shares in order to give CEO Mark Zuckerberg continued voting control of the company. His decision followed a shareholder lawsuit opposed to the creation of a new class of stock.

Zuckerberg said in a Facebook post Friday that proceeds of the sale will go to fund his and wife Priscilla Chan's "work in education, science, and advocacy".

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The share restructuring was aimed at ensuring Zuckerberg's continued control of Facebook even as he planned to give away 99 percent of his family's wealth over his lifetime. Zuckerberg said he plans to sell 35 million to 75 million shares - worth up to United States dollars 12 billion at current prices - over the next 18 months for philanthropy.

Sjunde AP-Fonden, a Swedish national pension fund, and The Amalgamated Bank sued past year, saying that Zuckerberg should have to pay for the right to retain control while selling stock.

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President Obama warned Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg to start taking the influence of fake news on his platform seriously ahead of President Trump's inauguration, The Washington Post reported Sunday.

Rudy said the Class C proposal was rejected by 80 per cent of minority shareholders in a vote previous year.

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A group of investors had sued over the proposal, which would have allowed Mr Zuckerberg to retain voting control of Facebook but own a smaller share of the company's shares. "But he told Obama that those messages weren't widespread on Facebook and that there was no easy remedy", the newspaper said, quoting people it said had knowledge of the exchange. While Zuckerberg reportedly downplayed Facebook's impact in his talk with Obama, last week Zuckerberg announced broad changes in how Facebook deals with political ads, and turned over 3,000 Russia-linked ads to congressional investigators.

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