The New York Times and San Jose Mercury News have opinion columns today questioning the propriety of the Oracle derivative settlement announced earlier this week. The CEO of Oracle agreed to pay $100 million to charity on behalf of Oracle, with an additional payment of $22.5 million in legal fees to plaintiffs’ counsel.
Quote of note (Times): “John C. Coffee Jr., a professor of securities law at Columbia University, is not persuaded justice was served. He suggested that it ‘would be fairer if the plaintiffs’ attorneys would take their fee in the form of a charitable contribution that Mr. Ellison would make in their name to charities of his choice.’ Perhaps, he mused, Mr. Ellison would choose a charity that promotes tort reform.”
Quote of note II (Mercury News): “There’s certainly a long history of Silicon Valley tycoons giving less than full respect to the rights of shareholders. Whether this justifies such an unusual settlement is debatable. Either way, it’s going to be a tough call for Judge Schwartz.”