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Murdochs re-elected to News Corp board

October 24, 2011

By Colin Mann

Rupert Murdoch has survived calls for his removal as News Corp chairman following the phone hacking scandal that led to the closure of the company’s News of the World tabloid title .

News Corp said that a majority of the 100 or so shareholders at a meeting in Los Angeles supported his re-election to the company’s board, as well as that of his sons, James and Lachlan, and the remaining directors. Voting figures were not released, but News Corp said they will be released next week.

News Cor. has come under pressure to make changes to its management structure, with a number of investors lobbying to reduce the influence of Murdoch and his family since the scandal broke in July.

Any move to oust Murdoch and others on the board faced difficulties, with Murdoch and his family controlling some 40 per cent of the voting shares, and a close ally holding an additional seven per cent. Such numbers would have required nearly every other shareholder to vote against Murdoch to unseat him.

Shareholders have also expressed concern over the company’s dual class structure, which critics claim gives Murdoch undue influence. He and his family control nearly half of the company’s voting stock, but they own only some 13 per cent of the outstanding shares in the company.



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