Altaba Announces Class Action Settlement of $47m

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In a letter addressed to its shareholders, Altaba Inc. (formerly Yahoo!) announced that it has sold the remaining shares of Yahoo Japan and that it has reached a settlement agreement in the class action lawsuit related to the 2014 Yahoo data breach.

In March of this year, as a result of the massive breaches that occurred between 2013 and 2016 at Yahoo, US District Judge Lucy Koh in San Jose, California, denied Verizon's attempts to dismiss claims of Yahoo's negligence and breach of contract, according to Reuters.

The legal woes resulting from the class action suit have today come to a close. “We are also pleased to announce today that we have reached an agreement in principle (subject to court approval) to settle the consumer class action litigation related to the Yahoo data breach,” Thomas J. McInerney, CEO at Altaba Inc., wrote.

“We have also received final court approval of the securities class action settlement, and we have negotiated an agreement to settle the shareholder derivative litigation (subject to court approval). We estimate that the Company will incur an incremental net $47 million in litigation settlement expenses to resolve all three cases. Together, these developments mark a significant milestone in cleaning up our contingent liabilities related to the Yahoo data breach.”

The settlement announcement comes 10 days after the plaintiffs and defendants engaged in a second day of mediation with Honorable Daniel Weinstein. As part of the agreement, the court has 45 days to approve the terms of the settlement.

“In the meantime, the parties to this action jointly and respectfully request the Court stay this litigation in its entirety to allow the parties to focus their efforts entirely on finalizing the settlement and to avoid any unnecessary waste of judicial resources,” John Yanchunis of Morgan & Morgan, lead counsel for the plaintiffs, and Ann Marie Mortimer of Hunton Andrews Kurth, LLP, attorney for the defendants wrote in a September 14 filing.

Shareholders were also informed that company proceeds will be used to repurchase stock, according to McInerney. He wrote, “Today we are announcing a new share repurchase authorization of $5.75 billion.”

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