Thumbs up or thumbs down? Perhaps a frowning emoticon would be a more appropriate to tag embattled Facebook founder, Mark Zuckerberg.
Major investors of Facebook are pushing to oust Zuckerberg as chairman of his billion-dollar company. Zuckerberg’s leadership is being questioned amidst a string of controversies.
These controversies include large scale security breaches, alleged involvement in the manipulation of 2016 U.S presidential elections through Russian troll farms, and the hiring of a Republican public relations firm, Definers, to salvage the company’s damaged reputation.
Jonas Kron, Senior Vice President of Trillium Asset Management who owns an £8.5m stake in Facebook stated that the new revelations about Definers strongly affirms the motion for Mr. Zuckerberg to let go of his dual role as chairman and chief executive:
“The latest report should remove any lingering doubts that some may have had.”
On Thursday, Mr Zuckerberg denied having knowledge of Definers being hired by the firm:
“As soon as I learned about this, I talked to our team and we are no longer working with this firm.”
Zuckerberg has also asked Facebook’s head of global affairs and communications, Sir Nick Clegg, to launch a review of Facebook’s use of political lobbying firms.
Mr. Kron was pleased with the reports that Sir Nick would conduct a review however, he is expressed his discontent and said that the move is “insufficient.” He also called Mr Clegg’s appointment a “whack-a-mole” move by Facebook which fails to address the incompetence of top level management.
New York City Comptroller Scott Stringer added his vote to Trillium Asset Management’s motion for Zuckerberg to step down:
“Facebook plays an outsized role in our society and our economy. They have a social and financial responsibility to be transparent – that’s why we’re demanding independence and accountability in the company’s boardroom.
“An independent board chair is essential to moving Facebook forward from this mess, and to reestablish trust with Americans and investors alike.”
Stringer oversees New York City’s $160 billion pension fund. Reports revealed that State and city treasurers from Rhode Island, Illinois and Pennsylvania have also joined the motion seeking the ouster of Zuckerberg from Facebook.