eBay Inc. announced that Niklas Zennstrom has stepped down as CEO of Skype. Zennstrom, who co-founded Skype in 2003, will become non-executive chairman of the Skype Board of Directors. Michael van Swaaij, eBay’s Chief Strategy Officer, will become acting CEO until a permanent successor is found. Russell Reynolds Associates is conducting the search for Zennstrom’s replacement.
Henry Gomez, Skype’s President, who remained a Senior Vice President at eBay during his two-year tenure at Skype, will return to eBay as Senior Vice President for Corporate Affairs, reporting to President and CEO Meg Whitman.
eBay also announced that it has paid EUR 375 million (approximately $530 million) to settle all of its future obligations under the earn-out agreement signed with certain Skype shareholders when eBay acquired Skype in 2005. The earn-out agreement provided for payments of up to approximately EUR 1,200 million (approximately $1,700 million) based upon specific active user, revenue and gross profit targets that were to be achieved in 2008 and the first half of 2009. eBay believes that the EUR 375 million payment is reasonable given the progress and anticipated rapid growth of Skype’s active user base.
Originally posted on October 1, 2007 @ 10:22 am