Top honchos exit Disney board
Los Angeles: Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook's chief operating officer, and Jack Dorsey, Twitter's chief executive, will not seek re-election to Walt Disney's board because of growing conflicts of interest between the media giant and the technology companies, Disney said on Friday.
Disney is moving heavily into online delivery of its TV shows and movies as viewers abandon traditional cable, and at one point had explored an acquisition of Twitter. At the same time, Twitter and Facebook are trying to attract audiences to video content on their platforms.
"Given our evolving business and the businesses Sandberg and Dorsey are in, it has become increasingly difficult for them to avoid conflicts relating to board matters, and they are not standing for re-election," Disney said in a statement.
Lead independent director Orin Smith, former CEO of Starbucks Corp, also will leave Disney's board, because of rules that specify retirement at age 74, the company said. Former Seagram Company vice-chairman Robert Matschullat will depart because of a 15-year term limit.
The departures take effect in March at the time of Disney's annual meeting, when shareholders will be asked to re-elect 10 other board members.