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Cablevision’s Zombie Directors

May 25, 2013

Deadline: “NYC Comptroller Calls For Cablevision’s “Zombie Directors” To Resign” by David Lieberman:

The term “zombie director” refers to a board member who’s elected without the support of a majority of the shareholder votes — and their existance infuriates corporate governance watchdogs.

Two such zombie directors are now on Cablevision’s board and Comptroller John Liu (who is also running for mayor) is pursuing the issue as oversight for “the city pension funds’ 532,020 Class A Cablevision shares”. Which is currently trading (NYSE: CVC $15.34) at about eight million dollars of value – but in early 2011 it could have been worth double ($32+) and in early 2001 could have been worth six times ($90!) — now paying with dividends.

Meanwhile, this week “Cablevision Calls Cops As Union Protesters Disrupt Shareholders Meeting

Recall “Newsday zombie cocktails” and zombies role in the disputes between AMC and Dish Networks.

Zombies are major figures in the Big Cable content wars, so it makes sense to see them crossover into their labor disputes and corporate governance issues and pension investing.

Adding irony is that Comptroller John Liu might be considered a zombie in the upcoming mayoral election (and not because he’s from Taiwan), he’s very low in the polling and marred by a ethics scandal effecting public credibility. Allowing Cablevision to claim:

Mr. Liu is no position to lecture anyone about ethics.

Hmm except that he’s the Comptroller so he is exactly in that position!!! But of course the corporation would rather tarnish the regulators than consider sensible reforms. For the NYC mayoral election there will be a Democratic primary and then likely a runoff for that primary when no candidate gets at least 40% of the vote. So at least both the Cablevision “zombie directors” got at least that much shareholder approval… so it’s ok right?

From → corporations, jobs, money

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