News Corp. says that the insurers backing its board of directors will pay the company $139 million to settle shareholder lawsuits over the British phone hacking scandal and the controversial purchase of an entertainment company run by founder Rupert Murdoch's daughter.
News Corp. also agreed to corporate governance reforms including a whistleblower hotline and an annual review of the independence of current and prospective board members. The reforms will remain in place through at least 2016.
The cash settlement, after subtracting fees for the plaintiffs' lawyers, will benefit shareholders indirectly by going into the company's coffers.
The reforms don't change the company's dual-class share structure, which allows CEO Murdoch to control the company through a family trust.
News Corp. shares rose 21 cents to $31.42 in midday trading Monday.
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