What is it about the sons and daughters of powerful politicians that corporations find so attractive?
In 2011, Chelsea Clinton became a board member of IAC/InterActiveCorp, a holding company that owns brands across 100 countries, mostly in media and Internet.
Barron’s reports that she receives “an annual $50,000 retainer and $250,000 in restricted IAC stock units” in compensation for her services.
As of Dec. 31, she owned the equivalent of 35,242 IAC shares, consisting of 29,843 shares and 5,399 share units under a deferred-compensation plan, according to a form she filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Share units convert to stock when an IAC director leaves the board.
IAC’s stock price has far outperformed the S&P 500 over the last few years bringing the year-end value of Clinton’s stake in the company to $8.95 million.
Chelsea is 39 years old. Nine years ago, when she was offered the position, she was 30-years-old. What did the officers of IACI find so appealing about her, especially at that age, that they would offer her a board membership?
It might have been the fact that her father was a former U.S. President. More likely, it was the expectation that her mother, then Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, was going to win the presidency in 2016. Now, that’s impressive.
It goes without saying that Ukrainian natural gas company, Burisma Holdings, would never have hired Hunter Biden to join their board had he not been the son of then-Vice President Joe Biden. In a weekend interview with Dan Bongino, Rudy Giuliani discussed the reasons why the company’s founder, the corrupt Mykola Zlochevsky, hired Hunter Biden. (I posted about that interview here. He said:
This whole scheme was put together by [Mykola] Zlochevsky [founder of Burisma], who thought he was going to lose his company because he’s a big crook. He stole $5 billion. He hears that Biden’s going to be the point man for Ukraine, Biden’s gonna give out all the money, he’s gonna be more powerful than the President. He hires Biden, not Biden’s son. He hires Joe, to protect him. To protect his business. And when it has to be protected, Joe comes through. That is exactly what happened.
This wasn’t the first time Hunter Biden profited because his father happened to be Joe Biden. Additionally Joe Biden’s brother, James Biden, has been profiting off of his brother’s positions in government for years.
Surely Chelsea Clinton’s credentials were far superior to Hunter Biden’s, but generally companies hire seasoned business leaders and executives to their boards. They are especially interested in candidates with experience in their specific sector.
That said, the Clintons and the Bidens are hardly unique. This kind of arrangement goes on all the time. I’m just saying, it’s nice work if you can get it.