Eddie Lampert

Eddie Lampert has dumped additional shares of AutoNation, Inc. (NYSE:AN) according to the latest SEC form 13D filing. The hedge fund manager and founder of ESL Investments Inc. sold 3,066,509 shares at $0 per share Monday, 26th November through one of his investment funds, ESL Investors LLC. Eddie Lampert also sold 9,317,556 shares held via SPE Master II fund.

Eddie Lampert has been offloading his gigantic stake in Florida-based Automotive retailer since January and recently sold nearly $34 million worth of the company’s stock, as covered in our earlier post. Eddie Lampert may now be deemed to own 53,187,753 shares of AutoNation, Inc. (NYSE:AN) or 43.7 percent of shares outstanding, directly and indirectly through various partnerships and investment funds.

Zero value dispositions are very common with insiders, and usually happen when an insider chooses not to exercise a certain position held on a derivative, which otherwise could be converted to common stock at a pre-set exercise price. Alternatively the transactions with $0 per share price also happen when a company repurchases convertible derivatives from an outsider, in this case equating to a zero value acquisition of the underlying stock.

His partnership investment vehicles include ESL Partners, L.P., ESL Investors, L.L.C., SPE II Partners, LP, SPE Master II, LP, RBS Partners, L.P., ESL Institutional Partners, L.P., RBS Investment Management, L.L.C., and CBL Partners, L.P., all operating under ESL Investments Inc. Therefore, ESL may also be deemed to own a 43.7 percent stake in AutoNation.

AutoNation Inc. (NYSE:AN) has 121,762,984 shares of common stock outstanding, with only 37.51 million floated at the NYSE. The company’s market cap stood at $4.72 billion as of Thursday, November 29. Its enterprise value is pegged at $8.85 billion, nearly double the market cap.

Eddie Lampert still owns more than a $2.0 billion stake in the company as per the current market cap, despite having disposed of so much over the recent past. The company’s competitors include Group 1 Automotive, Inc. (NYSE:GPI), Penske Automotive Group, Inc. (NYSE:PAG), and Sonic Automotive Inc (NYSE:SAH).

At the time of this writing AutoNation, Inc. (NYSE:AN) stock was trading at $38.87 per share, down $1.03, or a 2.58 percent decline from yesterday’s close.