Although he’s just 37, PayPal co-founder Max Levchin is seen as a legend in Silicon Valley. That’s why people around the company are jazzed that he just joined the board, filling one seat opened with the departure today of Weather Channel CEO David Kenny and Intuit chief Brad Smith. The two execs “decided to step down … in order to focus on their respective companies,” the company says. The moves leave Yahoo with 11 directors. Levchin was brought aboard with support from Third Point‘s Daniel Loeb, a major investor in the company who won the right this year to nominate four directors in a deal for him to end a proxy fight. (Third Point partnered with Deadline.com parent PMC in its recent acquisition of Variety.) Levchin’s seen as a beacon for talent — especially among young engineers. After helping to create PayPal, which eBay bought in 2002, he founded Slide, a social media info sharing service. Google paid $182M to buy it in 2010, making Levchin VP of engineering. He left a year later when Google closed the venture. In addition to his management and investment work, Levchin chairs the boards of Kaggle and Yelp (which he helped to launch), and is a director at Evernote. He also was executive producer of the 2005 film Thank You For Smoking. Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer praised Levchin’s “phenomenal sense for great products and keen focus on user experiences.”
By DAVID LIEBERMAN, Financial Editor | Thursday December 13, 2012 @ 4:26pm ESTTags: Daniel Loeb, Third Point, Yahoo
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